Friends and colleagues,
March is special to us, as Earth Hour - WWF’s iconic people-driven movement – has taken place during this month for the past 14 years. Although the current context has led us to do it digitally for the second consecutive year, the movement has adapted and grown to leave a positive impact on the planet.
At the regional level, more than 14,000 people participated in the virtual Earth Hour march organized by various WWF offices in Latin America. Also, users from all Central American countries came together in WWF-Mesoamerica’s Earth Hour virtual event. In addition, WWF-Paraguay developed activities throughout March, which included environmental education webinars, recycling workshops, an eco-entrepreneurs fair and a digital event on March 27.
In the Forests practice, more than 50 organizations have joined forces to promote a Pact for the Amazon and healthy forests in Peru. Furthermore, in the same country, the MDE Saweto project is nearing completion, leaving impactful results for local indigenous communities.
In relation to work in the Wildlife practice, Fundación Vida Silvestre announced the first awards for citizen science in Argentina. And Mexico signed an agreement with the government to support national biodiversity conservation efforts.
Regarding Climate and Energy, WWF-Bolivia presented a series of technical analyses of Bolivia’s energy situation, and the challenges and impacts of the energy transition.
Around the Food practice, WWF-Ecuador launched the digital campaign “Save the Planet from your Kitchen,” to prevent food waste in Ecuadorian homes.
Finally, regarding Governance, WWF-Colombia has been working with the government to support the creation of a Global Commission on Economy and Nature, an initiative that already has the support of the president. Meanwhile, WWF-Chile proposed environmental aspects for the new Constitution that is being discussed in the country.
Enjoy this new edition,
Vice president & Regional Director
Latin America celebrated Earth Hour with a virtual march
More than 14.000 people in Latin America expressed its concern for the health of the Earth and its willingness to protect the biodiversity of the region with a digital march that began on March 16 and concluded on March 27, the date on which Earth Hour was commemorated around the world, as one of the largest global movements for the environment.
WWF in Bolivia, Central America, Colombia, Chile, Mexico and Paraguay, invited society to march from a digital space and to support environmental causes in their countries.
Central America comes together for a virtual Earth Hour event
Earth Hour brought all of Central America together in an hour-long streaming organized by WWF-Mesoamerica. The event included stories from anonymous environmental heroes from the region, who narrated their actions and commitment to help the planet. In addition, there was a representation of personalities from each country in the region, including a special presentation of "Panchorizo" as his character "Chef Paco" (Pancho Toralla, Guatemalan artist, circus and theater expert), as well as an interview with a former fellow of the Russell E. Train Nature Education Program. The event was carried out in partnership with the Scouts of each country of the region.
March: the journey towards Earth Hour in Paraguay
For this edition of Earth Hour 2021, the WWF-Paraguay office developed activities throughout March that included environmental education webinars, recycling workshops and an eco-entrepreneurs fair. In the context of the health quarantine for the prevention of Covid-19, many activities were carried out digitally. More than 50 public, private, civil society and volunteer organizations supported this event. This year, an official website was developed from where the central event was broadcasted on March 27. This was a success in terms of the amount of participants nationwide, reaching 32,000 online users. Also, 2,000 users from Paraguay and neighboring countries connected to the live event on social networks such as Facebook. The video of the event had more than 10,000 views in subsequent days. Earth Hour 2021 was also streamed by other allied organizations and a news channel. Online users throughout Latin America connected to the digital march and completed a survey of commitment to the planet
Pact for the Amazon and healthy forests in Peru
More than 50 civilian organizations including WWF, the business sector, Indigenous communities, religious communities and decentralized governments, have come together to create the Pact for the Amazon and healthy forests. The purpose is to promote informed dialogues during 2021 to position the Amazon and healthy forests in the context of the elections, the bicentennial of Peru's Independence celebrations and the post-pandemic economic and social reactivation. The goal is to contribute to the implementation of an Amazonian agenda in national affairs.
MDE Saweto Project is near completion
In 2015, the project MDE SAWETO was created with the intention of strengthening the land rights of indigenous communities and their development. Beyond the milestones accomplished by the project, the most important achievement has been the leadership of the nation's indigenous organizations - AIDESEP y CONAP - and the implementation of the program throughout 15 local and subnational indigenous organizations representing their communities, bringing the program international recognition.
As the project is about to be completed, it has achieved the recognition from 250 indigenous communities and the accreditation from 58 Indigenous communities. Also, it has strengthened the community forest management of over a 100 native communities.
Vida Silvestre announced the first citizen science awards in Argentina
Seeking to highlight the support of its community, Vida Silvestre will acknowledge those users who contributed the most to citizen science in 2020 through the platform Argentinat. This event marks a milestone being the first official awards for citizen science in the country.
Argentinat.org is the iNaturalist platform for Argentina, a global social network of citizen science that allows users to identify animals, plants or fungi through an image, in order to know its name, to obtain more information and to contribute collectively to the understanding of biodiversity. In 2020, the local community grew about 75 % and more than 120,000 new observations were recorded.
Government signs agreement that will benefit Mexican biodiversity
The National Coordinator of the National Commission for the Knowledge and Use of Biodiversity (CONABIO) and the General Director of WWF-Mexico signed a Framework Collaboration Agreement with the purpose of developing research, knowledge, conservation, sustainable practices, information and education, and spreading information about biodiversity.
The event highlighted the importance of collaboration to achieve shared goals aimed at monitoring species of common interest, such as river and swamp crocodiles, monarch butterflies and jaguars. This partnership also includes capacity building through workshops aimed at various key actors to strengthen and to manage actions aimed at the care and conservation of marine species, such as Mexican sharks and sea cucumbers.
Bolivian energy transition is possible
WWF-Bolivia presents a series of technical documents that show the energy situation in Bolivia and the challenges and impacts of the energy transition. The study suggests that the consumption of fossil fuels in Bolivia by 2040 will grow 2.2 times, putting at risk the achievement of the NDC goals and the Paris Agreement. Bolivia has the necessary resources for the energy transition. In 20 years, photovoltaic solar energy could surpass the current proven oil reserves by 20 times its current size.
WWF-Ecuador launches the campaign “Save the Planet from your Kitchen”
WWF-Ecuador launched the digital campaign "Save the Planet from your Kitchen" to prevent food waste in Ecuadorian homes. "Lana Turaleza", a little girl, accompanies and guides Ecuadorian families through practical and very easy tips to use 100% of your food and - most importantly - avoid waste at all costs. The way in which we produce and consume food is the greatest threat to our planet, despite this, one third of all food produced is wasted globally and thousands of households are unaware of this alarming fact. Human beings are the only species that can take steps to save the planet from the comfort of their kitchens.
Support for a Global Commission on Economy and Nature
Colombian President Ivan Duque supported the creation of a Global Commission on Economy and Nature, a key initiative to reverse the loss of biodiversity and the degradation of ecosystems, connecting and strengthening the narrative of economy and nature. The Commission seeks to put nature at the center of global political and economic decisions. Colombia’s lead will encourage other countries to join this collective effort to produce evidence and solutions for transformative change. WWF's Climate and Energy team and WWF-Colombia's Government Relations and International Affairs team have been working with the Colombian Government to support this initiative.
WWF-Chile proposes environmental aspects for a new Constitution
WWF-Chile expressed the need for the country's new Constitution to include environmental issues among its priorities, addressing them in a multidimensional manner and with a strong link to Human Rights and environmental justice. This new Constitution will be drawn up by a convention that must be elected in April.
In this context, WWF-Chile presented a series of general guidelines which are available in the following link.