The public’s response to the spike in the forest fires in Brazil these past few weeks has been inspiring and huge morale booster for our partners on the ground, especially the indigenous peoples like the Yanomami and Kayapó who are on the frontlines protecting their lands. We hope such action will result in reduced fires in the coming days and weeks.
But the other threats — like mining, logging, oil exploration, and ranching — are likely to persist, regardless of the season.
To address these threats, the Rainforest Foundation has developed over the past 30 years an integrated strategy that has been rolled out in various parts of the Amazon and has helped protect more than 33 million hectares. That’s the equivalent to New England and New York State combined!
The solution relies in part on training and deploying technologies that local Indigenous groups can use to monitor and stop encroachment of their territories. This solution, which uses satellite, drone, and GPS-enabled cell phones, can actually pin-point within a few yards and almost in real-time the exact moment when outsiders penetrate a protected area for the purposes of pilfering resources or burning down the forest to clear land for cattle or agriculture. This solution also works to combat fires set intentionally to clear land for farming.
The Rainforest Foundation’s solution has been deployed in several countries in Central and South America and the results speak for themselves. In one community in Peru alone, deforestation dropped from 5% annually to zero once the tool was deployed.
As a result, some 40 communities are using the monitoring tool in Peru, which has also been successfully deployed to Panama and Guyana. COICA, the umbrella organization that represents Indigenous Peoples in the nine countries that straddle the Amazon river basin, has asked the Rainforest Foundation to deploy its monitoring and protection system to Indigenous groups across the region.
With your support, our goal is to make sure that every Indigenous community that wishes to use this intervention can have access to it in the very near future.
Until consumption patterns around the world change and economic development is redefined, the threats to Indigenous Peoples, the true Guardians of the Forest, will persist. Nevertheless, the Rainforest Foundation believes (in fact, we have proof!) that threats can be controlled or eliminated provided the right conditions and solutions are in place.
Our commitment to help protect Indigenous territories has never been greater. Please donate to support the continued deployment of this unique solution to the threats Indigenous People face in defending their territories!
Thank you for your unwavering support!