05 Mar

Amazonia with a future! Learn about successful bio-businesses that conserve forests and wetlands

Indigenous organisations of the Abanico del Pastaza in Datem del Marañón with support from Profonanpe.

The Abanico del Pastaza is an ecosystem of more than 3.8 million hectares, located in the Datem del Marañón province of the department of Loreto. It represents 3 % of Peru’s Amazonian forest area and contains 40 % of the carbon stocks retained in the Peruvian territory, which is very important for tackling climate change.

Since 2017, Profonanpe, Peru’s environmental fund, with funding from the Green Climate Fund, has been implementing the project “Building Resilience in the Wetlands of Datem del Marañón Province, Peru” for the benefit of the Awajún, Achuar, Chapra, Kandozi, Kichwa, Wampis and Shawi indigenous peoples.

This project aims to improve the resilience of the indigenous communities living in the Datem del Marañón province, improve their livelihoods and reduce greenhouse gas emissions caused by deforestation.

Balbina, Santiago, Ronel, Gunter and Guillermo are defenders of the integrity of the Abanico del Pastaza, whose stories exemplify the tireless work of conservation and sustainable use of this supremely important Amazon wetland.

Here are their success stories, supported by Profonananpe and international cooperation to improve their productive capacities, and shown in the documentary “Wetlands for Life”.

Balbina Sundi

Balbina is part of the Kandozi ethnic group and is president of the Charapi Association of Women Producers, made up of 15 women in Datem del Marañón, who lead the conservation of taricaya turtles through repopulation activities and the sale of their eggs.
“In this way, we conserve the species, empower Amazonian women and enjoy the economic value,” she says.
This experience has allowed the empowerment of Amazonian women and the leadership of their own bio-businesses.

Segundo Chanchari

Segundo is an aguaje palm climber who lives in the native community of Puerto Díaz, in Datem del Marañón. He is in charge of collecting the aguaje fruit so that they can later be sold to other associations.
“I am a trainer in different communities. Before, they didn’t know how to extract the aguaje from the palm trees because they were cut down. Now, with the help of a harness, we can climb the trees and extract the fruit without affecting the palm forest. “We also don’t remove all the bunches because these fruits are food for the birds,” he says.
Segundo stresses the importance of sustainable management of the aguajales and points out that there are currently 229.5 hectares under management in Datem del Marañón. “The aguaje is a blessing for humans and that is why we are contributing to its conservation,” he emphasises.

Ronel Pérez

Ronel Pérez belongs to the Awajún ethnic group of the native Chapis community, whose inhabitants have formed the Asociación de Productores de Ungurahui y Aguaje de Pueblos Indígenas del Sector Marañón (APUAPISEM), an association to implement a bio-business that sustainably extracts oil from the aguaje fruit.
“We believe that with the proper management of the forest we can achieve a sustainable use of this Amazonian fruit, in this case obtaining oil from our plant,” he says.

Gunter Yandari and Guillermo Yumbato

Gunter Yandari and Guillermo Yumbato belong to the Kandozi ethnic group and live in the Musa Karusha native community. They are part of the Katinbaschi Association, who are in charge of the commercialisation of fresh artisanal fish extracted from Lake Rimachi.
“Our association has 120 members who, after daily fishing, take the fish to our ice plant for cold preservation, which operates thanks to solar energy. We have 120 photovoltaic panels. In this way, we can market our production of fresh and frozen fish in markets in Tarapoto and Yurimaguas,” they say.

The extraction of Amazonian fish respects the juvenile populations so as not to threaten the survival of the species.
With this mechanism of sustainable use of the Amazonian hydrobiological resource, the ecosystem is conserved, while with the economic income obtained, the Katinbaschi Association contributes to improving the quality of life of its community.
These five experiences are some of the various examples of responsible bio-business in the Peruvian Amazon, which are strongly supported by Profonanpe and international cooperation agencies that are committed to sustainable development and the conservation of our natural resources.

Source: Andina

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