Nature and Culture, in collaboration with Indigenous and local communities, are working on creating the El Pitayal State Reserve, in southern Sonora, northwest of Mexico. With this they seek to protect the highest density of the pitaya cactus in the world. The pitaya cactus (Stenocereus thurberi) endemic to North America is threatened by extensive agricultural clearings, which has put it at risk of disappearing.
Miguel Ayala Mata, Mexico Director of Nature and Culture International speaks on this unique ecosystem, of approximately 50 thousand hectares located in the municipalities of Huatabampo, Navojoa, and Álamos, a source of life for local communities and an important and attractive tourist destination.
You walk into a dimly lit bar. There’s a lion at one end and a jaguar at the other. Who do you buy a drink for?
Hope for the Amazon: Part 2, The Science Business Model of Nature and Culture International
Trotsky Riera, Project Coordinator for Ecuador at Nature and Culture International speaks on the Indigenous Peoples of Tiwi Nunka.
A conservation group helped bring an Amazonian super fruit to market with sustainable practices—and it started with a map.
In an unprecedented show of solidarity, communities in the Amazon, NGOs and local governments are teaming up to protect Ecuador’s rainforest.
Ecuador’s National System of Protected Areas now includes the 5,497-hectare (13,583-acre) ancestral Tiwi Nunka Forest, which the Shuar Indigenous community of El Kiim lives in and relies on for sustenance and many cultural practices.
For the first time in Ecuador, Pastaza’s provincial government is working with Indigenous communities to create the province’s development and territorial management plan together with Nature and Culture International.
Jaime Toro Guajala, Nature & Culture Coordinator for Pastaza Province and Felipe Serrano, Country Director of Ecuador were interviewed for this article.
Supported by Nature and Culture, the Regional Water Fund of Southern Ecuador (FORAGUA) operates in 14 municipalities, serving 500,000 residents, and has restored 3,700 acres of land and put an additional 833,000 acres under conservation.
“With the addition of Ñembi Guasu, 15 million acres of the Gran Chaco’s most cultural and biologically diverse forests are now protected.”
Renzo Paladines, Nature & Culture Executive Director of Latin America
“If you want to protect your jaguar population in Arizona, whether it’s one, two or three jaguars, you have to work with Mexico. And that’s reality.”
Lydia Lozano, Nature & Culture Mexico Country Director
“We have always been conservationists of natural resources and we want to maintain the territory for future generations. We see that, little by little, people come to work on these lands, so we need to conserve these reserves.”
Rubén Ortiz, Representative of the Ñembi Guasu Conservation Area
“We all depend on nature for things we need – clean water, clean air. I could generate a list of 50 things. The thing I find very salient for a San Diego audience who might think Latin America is a long ways away is that the Amazon forest is big enough that it actually impacts our weather in the United States; it impacts our climate.”
Matt Clark, Nature & Culture President and CEO
“After watching the show, I hope people visit our website to learn more about what we are doing and how they can help. And if they aren’t already, I hope they get involved in conservation and climate change mitigation in their own backyards as well.”
Matt Clark, Nature & Culture President and CEO
“It is a small area, but one of the richest of the world.”
Iván Mejía, Nature & Culture’s Coordinator for the Amazonas and Cajamarca areas
“Due to efforts by local communities, researchers, Nature and Culture, the Andes Amazon Fund, and the Ecuadorian government – particularly the Ministry of the Environment – Río Negro-Sopladora National Park has received the highest conservation category status in the country.”
Valeria Sorgato, Reporter
“As Amazonians we are pleased to lead these important and necessary conservation processes.”
Franklin Puente, Governor of the province of Morona Santiago
Nature and Culture Helps Ecuador Establish a 6.3-million-acre Conservation Corridor in Amazon Rainforest
“The creation of the Pastaza reserve is a global example of what local and provincial governments working together with indigenous communities can do to protect vital natural resources while ensuring their own long-terms sustainable development and livelihoods.”
Renzo Paladines, Nature & Culture’s Executive Director of Latin America
“The result—an astounding new protected area that is 22% bigger than Yosemite National Park—is one of a growing catalog of South American indigenous reserves that aim to conserve the environment, as well as cultural identity.”
Silvia Usuriaga, Nature & Culture’s Senior Program Manager
“To actually go in the field and see the environmental battlefront…and see Nature & Culture working right there, trying to turn the tide and preserve it, is incredible.”
Dwight Worden, Del Mar City Councilman
“I just respect so deeply someone who says ‘I am going to make this happen.’ And then has the passion and perseverance to make it happen.”
Allison Alberts, Ph.D., San Diego Zoo Global Chief Conservation and Research Officer