Dear friends and colleagues,
For the month of October, the WWF offices in Latin America and the Caribbean promoted and organized activities ranging from awareness about deforestation and logging, to findings on mammals in areas affected by fires. Meetings, recognitions and awards for our work were highlighted, so the milestones of this month are summarized below:
In our Forests practice, WWF-Peru, together with Bolivia, Ecuador and Colombia, reported on the recommendations, strategies, reflections and findings on illegal extraction and trafficking of wood in the Andean regions. Proposals and initiatives for forest control and surveillance are highlighted within the reports.
Also, WWF-Ecuador and the National Chamber of Aquaculture (CNA) signed an agreement for the preservation of natural ecosystems at mangrove forests, affected by deforestation for shrimp farming within the country. The agreement is the first national commitment to promote aquaculture activities without land conversion, and will use geospatial data for the analysis and classification of coverage of affected territories in coastal regions.
With regards to Food, WWF-Paraguay represented the country in the exhibition of the retail sector, with free presentations and talks, which included representatives of the public sector and business leaders. Moreover, an alliance was created with WWF-Colombia, which consolidated a master conference with the country’s the retail sector leader, Grupo Éxito. During the expo, the participation of WWF-Paraguay and WWF-Colombia received an award for being the "Most Innovative Stand", as it was made with recycled cardboard. Similarly, Fundación Vida Silvestre in Argentina launched a video to raise awareness about the impacts of modern food systems on nature for International Day of Awareness of Food Loss and Waste, which presented a tour of food from production to the point of consumption.
In relation to Wildlife, WWF-Bolivia recorded sightings of mammals in areas affected by wetland fires in the Bolivian Pantanal, thanks to the organization's first study on these protected areas. The presence of mammals in these areas indicates the adaptation of ecosystems to this type of impact.
Meanwhile, in Climate Change, WWF-Chile celebrated its 20 years of work towards the conservation of biodiversity and reduction of human impacts on ecosystems. For this, they recognized twenty Leaders in Conservation who have characterized by their activist work as community leaders, scientists, managers, and those who share information for the preservation of the environment.
Lastly in the Oceans practice, WWF-Mexico activated temporary community jobs for the cleaning and conservation of six Protected Areas of the Bay of La Paz and other coastal areas of Baja California Sur, Mexico. The initiative seeks the recovery of water flow, the conservation of ecosystems, and the elimination of solid waste in these environments.
Enjoy this new edition,
Senior Vice president & Regional Director
Challenges and opportunities of legal wood
WWF-Peru, together with Bolivia, Ecuador and Colombia, located in countries that make up the Amazon basin, carried out national reports on illegal timber trafficking and the consequences of this activity, promoting the legal timber trade. The reports contain updated data and promote improved transparency and environmental awareness among citizens about the issue. Illegal extraction and trafficking of timber have become a serious problem that causes the degradation of forests, loss of species and destruction of ecosystems. The illegality of timber forestry activity occurs in different links of the production chain and generates a distortion of the forestry market and low competitiveness of the formal sector, and harms the socioeconomic development of communities in the Amazon area.
Working towards aquaculture without conversion
WWF-Ecuador and the National Chamber of Aquaculture (CNA) of Ecuador signed an agreement to work to prevent deforestation and the conversion of natural ecosystems for shrimp farming throughout the country. This agreement marks the first national commitment to aquaculture without conversion.
Ecuador is home to the largest mangrove forest in the Eastern Hemisphere but has seen coastal habitat loss due to conversion for shrimp farming. The new agreement between WWF-Ecuador and CNA used geospatial data to analyze and classify land cover in coastal regions, where this crop is most common. Using this research and data based on scientific evidence, the CNA will establish a baseline and repeat this analysis on a regular basis to reduce and ultimately end all conversions caused by shrimp farming shortly.
Promoting sustainable production and consumption
WWF-Paraguay had a successful booth at the largest expo in the retail sector organized by the Paraguayan Chamber of Supermarkets. WWF-Paraguay held free talks with representatives of the public sector and business leaders over the course of the two-day expo. Likewise, in alliance with WWF-Colombia, the offices were able to ensure the participation of Colombia’s retail sector leader, Grupo Éxito. WWF also received an award for being the “Most Innovative Stand,” since the stand was made mostly of recycled cardboard.
Food waste awareness
During the most recent edition of World Food Waste Awareness Day, Vida Silvestre Argentina released a new video to raise awareness about the impacts of current food systems on nature. The objective of the launch allows highlighting the need to modify current food systems and review consumption habits, to reverse the negative impacts on nature. The video launch was accompanied by data from the WWF Report “Driven to Waste,” to raise awareness about food waste worldwide, from production to the final point of consumption.
Mammals registered in areas affected by fires
WWF-Bolivia registered mammals in the Bolivian Pantanal, in wetland territories affected by fires. This is the first study of its kind in protected areas and establishes a reference that can help determine what impact fires have on mammals in this region. The quantity and variety of mammals observed in fire-associated ecosystems suggests that, despite recurrent and intense burning, they have adapted in these regions to fires caused by human action.
Chile recognizes 20 environmental leaders
In October, WWF-Chile celebrated 20 years of work focused on conserving biodiversity, dealing with climate change and reducing human impacts on ecosystems. This is in line with the global WWF mission of building a future in which humanity can live in harmony with nature. As a part of its twentieth anniversary celebration, WWF recognized twenty Leaders in Conservation.
Activating the economy with beach cleaning
As a way to promote the reactivation of tourist economies after lifting health emergency status from COVID, WWF-Mexico established 196 temporary community jobs. The workers helped with the cleaning and conservation of six Protected Areas in the bay of La Paz and other coastal areas of the entity of Baja California Sur. In 2021, WWF-Mexico launched a temporary employment program with cleaning and maintenance days in the ecosystems that are part of the whale shark's habitat. So far, it has managed to remove 40 tons of solid waste from 331 hectares of mangroves and beaches in the bay of La Paz; recovered the water flow for the restoration of 2 hectares of mangroves; install conservation buoys; and remove 1 ton of solid waste from the seabed in the Espiritu Santo Archipelago.