In Project Amazônia 2.0, communities and technology team up for nature

That Indigenous peoples and traditional populations are the most important forest guardians in Latin America and the Caribbean is an established fact. A report released in March by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) concludes as much. They are often the first people to spot illegal loggers, illegal miners, land grabbers, drug traffickers and other hostile actors encroaching on the forest. With their knowledge, Indigenous peoples can also perceive changes that point to imbalances in the environment, such as those caused by climate change. To strengthen and value the work of these populations, the FAO report suggests transforming it through social technology. Project Amazônia 2.0 is an initiative by global conservation authority the IUCN with funding from the European Union, and has worked on this issue since 2017. Using the latest developments in information technology, the project works to strengthen forest governance models in Indigenous and community-controlled territories in six Amazonian countries: Ecuador, Peru, Colombia, Guyana, Suriname and, since 2019, Brazil. A look back at the project, which is scheduled to end in the second half of 2021, provides insights into how these guardians have brought greater visibility to their role and the different challenges that each community faces across the Amazon. “The project respects the autonomy of traditional and Indigenous populations and their self-determination,” says Braulio Buendía from Ecuador, the regional coordinator for Amazônia 2.0. “Working in coordination with their organizations, it provides them with help and assistance to safeguard their territories, strengthen governance and improve their…This article was originally published on Mongabay

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