Victory for the Future of the Amazon

Watch Dr. Meg Symington, WWF’s Amazon managing director talk about the recent success.

In October 2010, WWF and several of our partners celebrated a major victory for the Amazon with the endorsement of a regional plan at the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) in Japan. Moving forward, the governments of the region will further develop this pan-Amazon conservation strategy – building on the existing network of national protected areas – with the support of WWF and others.

WWF applauds this landmark decision because it reaffirms a commitment to protect the region’s interconnected natural systems, recognizes the value of the work already being done at the national and local levels, and strengthens regional approaches to addressing – and preparing for – climate change.

Why is the regional plan so important?
Deforestation from unsustainable agriculture and poorly planned infrastructure projects drives a loss of species and natural resources. A conservation approach that stops at national borders does not effectively address the destruction of rivers that are the source of one-fifth of all free-flowing freshwater on Earth, or the logging of forests that play a critical role in maintaining regional and global climate. The new regional plan will work to protect the living Amazon.

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View photos of newly discovered species from Amazon Alive: A Decade of Discoveries

Read about WWF's work in the Amazon

WWF’s contribution to regional plan
Like many of WWF’s biggest wins, this agreement is the result of careful behind-the-scenes negotiations. For more than three years, WWF and partners have convened a series of technical workshops for Amazon government agency staff, protected area managers and others directly responsible for protecting biodiversity within the region. This recent effort grew directly out of WWF’s 40-plus years of experience in the field and high-level government support enforced by local work on the ground. WWF and its partners will continue supporting Amazon national governments with technical and management expertise, a landscape-wide vision, commitment to local communities, and partnerships at every level to keep the Amazon’s future healthy for us all.