Friends and colleagues,
We are nearing Earth Hour, the largest environmental movement in the world, and this year, it seeks to inspire people to raise their voice for nature at a crucial moment.
The joint effort has added up to great conservation results throughout the month. As the year progresses, regional efforts contribute to the collective response to change the path of our planet.
In work related to Wildlife, scientists from the South American River Dolphin Initiative registered more than 900 dolphins in their last expedition to count these cetaceans in Peru, Colombia and Brazil. On the other hand, in Argentina, public lands were increased to ensure the conservation of the guanaco. Meanwhile, Mexico launched a campaign with the English football club Wolverhampton to help conserve the Mexican wolf.
With regards to Oceans, the tuna sector in Ecuador seeks to implement fishing with biodegradable devices. In addition, the Chilean government approved a Participatory Management Plan for a Marine Protected Area in the Chilean Patagonia.
In Freshwater, the Government of Guatemala, with the support of WWF-Mesoamerica, committed to conserve water reserves.
While in the Forests practice, two young volunteers toured the Paraguay River to show the relationship between communities and nature. On another note, Colombia presented results from its biodiversity conservation project in Chocó, which includes the creation of three new protected areas.
In Climate and Energy efforts, the Municipality of Lima and WWF promoted an energy saving initiative through the Energy Efficiency in Iconic Buildings Project.
Lastly, in Governance, WWF-Bolivia inaugurated a new Environmental Education Center.
Enjoy this edition,
Vice president & Regional Director
More than 900 dolphins registered in the latest expedition
Scientists from the South American River Dolphin Initiative (SARDI) recorded more than 900 pink and gray dolphins during the last expedition to count these cetaceans in a stretch of the Amazon River between Peru, Colombia and Brazil. However, they remarked that there were a smaller number of individuals in the Brazilian region and threats, such as animals injured by ship propellers.
Public lands increased in La Payunia to conserve the guanaco
The most important guanaco migration process in South America takes place in La Payunia Provincial Reserve, in Argentina. Thanks to several NGOs, including Fundación Vida Silvestre and the government, public lands were increased in crucial areas of La Payunia to ensure guanaco conservation.
This milestone reflects the commitment and results of collaborative work through public-private partnerships for strengthening the protected areas systems.
Goal for the Mexican wolf
WWF-Mexico launched a campaign in favor of the Mexican wolf, a species that, with less than 50 free individuals, is endangered. Raúl Jiménez from the English Premier League team Wolverhampton, launched a call to support the Canis lupus baileyi with the hashtag #ProtectThePack.
The Mexican wolf was considered to be extinct from the wild for many years. At the end of 2019, its status was changed to “endangered,” after decades of scientific work to reproduce and reintroduce it into its natural habitat in Northern Mexico.
Tuna sector implements biodegradable devices
The Ecuadorian tuna sector seeks to implement biodegradable devices in fishing practices to reduce ocean pollution. After three years of researching materials, Tunacons, the leaders of industrial tuna fishing with purse seine and WWF-Ecuador partners, will replace at least 20% of their FADS with “ecoFADS” before December 31, this year. The commitment adds up to another milestone reached with the support of WWF: the entire Tunacons fleet uses non-mesh devices since mid-2018.
First Collaborative Management Plan for an MPA in the Chilean Patagonia
The Management Plan for the Multiple Use Marine Protected Area Pitipalena-Añihué was recently formalized by the Ministry of the Environment. This was built collaboratively by the inhabitants of the area, with the government’s advice and WWF’s support.
This milestone crowns an intense and innovative community process initiated in 2016, with the Regional Environment Secretariat of Aysen, and supported by WWF-Chile.
Guatemalan Government committed to conserve water reserves
The WWF-Mesoamerica study “Identification and Prioritization of Strategic Water Reserves for Guatemala” was the basis that boosted the government's commitment to conserve watersheds and water reserves. Now, institutional capacities will be strengthened to better protect and manage these strategic locations for water security and the country’s climate adaptation plans.
Faces of the River: the relationship between people and the environment
Faces of the River is a journey of two young volunteers along the Paraguay River, in their quest to learn about the riverside communities, spend time with them, and discover their relationship with nature. The expedition lasted 6 months and was supported by WWF-Paraguay. In total, they traveled about 1,300 kilometers, showing the natural beauty and reality of the riverside communities, from the inhabitants of the coasts that border Asunción, to those of native towns from the Chaco Pantanal.
Biodiversity conservation in landscapes impacted by mining in the Choco region
Five years of work in the Choco biogeographic region, one of the most biodiverse areas on the planet, resulted in important achievements such as three new protected areas, including the place where the Atrato river begins and two key areas for the mangrove’s protection. Additionally, it resulted in diagnostics and action plans in four National Natural Parks to manage mining impacts, 15 alternative production initiatives for the sustainable use of biological resources and a permanent work with local communities. These are just some the outcomes of the ‘Conservation of Biodiversity in Landscapes Impacted by Mining in the Choco Biogeographic Region’ project, funded by GEF, implemented by UNDP and executed by WWF, alongside the National Government, ethnic organizations and local institutions in one of the regions mostly affected by illegal mining in Colombia.
The City of Lima and WWF promote energy saving initiative
The “Energy efficiency in iconic buildings” project launched in Peru will allow officials to record energy consumption in real time and optimize it. This is possible thanks to a Smapee tool, which measures electrical consumption in real time and identifies the equipment that is the source of consumption. The Lima Municipal Palace has been chosen to join this project, which includes an energy audit and recommendations for energy efficiency measurements for their facilities.
Bolivia inaugurated a new Environmental Education Center
The Bientefué (name of a representative bird in the region) Environmental Education Center opened its doors to children, youth and adults, to bring nature to people and raise public awareness about the importance of protecting the planet. The center has 5 interactive rooms and an event room. It was inaugurated by the Autonomous Municipal Government of Tarija, and it is the fourth Environmental Education Center in Bolivia with the support of the Swedish Embassy in Bolivia and WWF.