Forest Futures: back in the Pando

The Tauhumanu river with its endles curves is one of the main geographical features of the Pando, the bright orange colour of its water suggests not only heavy rain in the last few days but also Andean tributaries

Amelia Baracat and myself have just arrived in Cobija, capital of the Pando to help plan and manage our Darwin Initiative ‘Forest Futures’ project. We need to go through budgets, recent developments and some of the challenges that need overcoming. We are also very excited to start our fruit tree nursery project funded by the innocent Foundation. Since I was last here in July we have begun to get significant interest from national authorities interested in sustainable development and forestry. At the end of November Rolman Velarde showed our San José agroforest plots to Engineer Raul Aguirre Vásquez of the Dirección de Gestión de Desarollo Forestal (Department for the Management of Forest Development) of the (Ministry of the Environment and Water). Earlier in September we also had a visit from Moory Romero of the Autoridad Plurinacional de la Madre de Tierra, the Government Department responsible for the application of Bolivia’s innovative ‘Mother Earth’ legislation.

Engineer Raul Aguirre from the Department of Forest Development of Bolivia’s Ministry of the Environment reviewing one of our agroforest plots at San Jose

Such visits are strategically important for our project as we want to influence a broad range of decision-makers in the Pando and Bolivia, focussing on rural communities but spreading out to policy-makers and NGOs who impact land-use in the Amazon. To a great extent  this is what will determine our legacy. For this reason we are always very happy to host visits to our plots and to give talks or seminars!

Collaborator from the Pimpollo Israelite community, Don Miguel ‘El Condorino’ discussing some of the issues involved with working with this challenging community



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