Estima-se que cerca de um décimo (1/10), da população brasileira seja de descendentes de judeus cristãos-novos - alguns historiadores afirmam que na verdade essa proporção é de 35%. Isso equivale, na menor das estimativas, a 17 milhões de pessoas.
O Nordeste brasileiro é detentor do maior volume de água represado em regiões semiáridas do mundo. São 37 bilhões de metros cúbicos, estocados em cerca de 70 mil represas. A água existe, todavia o que falta aos nordestinos é uma política coerente de distribuição desses volumes, para o atendimento de suas necessidades básicas.
About one-fourth of the world’s known plant species are found in Brazil.
The city of Rio de Janeiro throws a New Year’s Eve party that is probably the biggest – and arguably the most spectacular – in the world. Around two million people, all of them dressed at least partly in white (a popular tradition adopted from Afro-Brazilian religion), congregate on the huge crescent-shaped expanse of Copacabana beach to watch a midnight firework display.
Brazil has the world’s second biggest black population after Nigeria, the largest number of people of Japanese ancestry outside Japan, and more people of Lebanese or Syrian extraction than the combined populations of Lebanon and Syria.
More than 80% of Brazilians live in urban areas. São Paulo is the biggest and most populous city in South America.
The most famous of the gentle bossa nova melodies of the 1950s and 60s, Garota de Ipanema (The Girl from Ipanema) by Tom Jobim and Vinicius de Moraes is generally thought to be among the five most-played pieces of music (either live or on the radio) in the world.
Capital punishment was last used as a form of punishment in Brazil in 1876, and has not been officially used since the proclamation of the Republic in 1889. Brazil was the second country in the Americas to abolish this form of punishment, preceded by Costa Rica in 1859.
Against a backdrop of rising concerns about climate change and declining oil reserves, Brazil has become a pioneer in the production of ethanol (produced from sugarcane) and other biofuels. More than three-quarters of the automobiles sold in Brazil have flex-fuel engines, capable of running on petrol, ethanol, or a mixture of the two.