Nearly one acre of forest is lost every second
34M+ ACRES SAVED
Every $1 you donate today to support biodiversity in Bolivia will be matched with $1 through our SAVES Challenge. Your gift will have DOUBLE the impact!
Stop Fires in the Bajo Paragua Rainforest
The Bajo Paragua forest of Eastern Bolivia is ground zero in the fight to save the Amazon Rainforest from logging, fire, and conversion to agriculture. Intact through 2019, some 5-10% of the forest burned during the terrible fire season of 2020, spilling over from the deforestation frontier just to the south. If these trends continue, the entire forest, an area one and a half times the size of Delaware, will be lost within a few years. With it will go the livelihoods and culture, the very being of the indigenous Guarasug’we people, as well as 337,162,504 metric tonnes of carbon – up in smoke.
To hold the line, Rainforest Trust and our partner, Fundación Natura Bolivia, propose to work with the Guarasug’we and local governments to create the San Ignacio and Concepcion Municipal Protected Areas, safeguarding over 2 million acres of rich, lowland rainforest. Our partner will train, equip and deploy patrols and fire brigades to protect the forest and its indigenous residents. Some additional forest loss is perhaps inevitable, but we think we can slow it down and secure the remaining forest within a few years. The burnt patches will regenerate; the Amazon will survive. Header Photo: Illegal clearing at the project site’s edge, courtesy of Fundación Natura Bolivia.
COST PER ACRE
Phreatobius sanguijuela (CR); Giant Otter (EN); Amazon River Dolphin (EN); Crowned Solitary Eagle (EN); Black-faced Black Spider Monkey (EN)
(CR)= Critically Endangered, (EN)=Endangered
ACRES PRESERVED BY
Fundación Natura Bolivia
*(metric tonnes of CO2 equivalents)
Save Threatened Species
Comprised of swamp, riverine and floodplain forest habitats, the Bajo Paragua is rich in Endangered Amazon species. The proposed protected areas will safeguard 1,273 species of fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds and many charismatic large mammals. These include the Crowned Solitary Eagle (EN), Black-faced Black Spider Monkey (EN), Giant Otter (EN), Tapir (VU) and Jaguar (VU). The site also houses globally threatened timber species like Broadleaf Mahogany (VU), Umburana Do Cheiro (EN) and Spanish Cedar (VU).
A newly discovered golden bat species will also benefit from this protection. Although its conservation status is yet to be determined, it is highly likely to be classified as Endangered and endemic given its limited range and increasing habitat loss. Species numbers are still preliminary and likely to increase, as much of the biodiversity in the area is still unknown to science.
The Bajo Paragua also forms a critical corridor between two vast neighboring protected areas–securing it will maintain an unbroken expanse of forest through to Brazil.
Be a Part of Our Solution
Urgent action is required to save the remaining forest. By helping us create the San Ignacio and Concepcion Municipal Protected Areas, your support will provide new long-term legal protection to the Bajo Paragua Forest.
Our partner’s top priority will be to work closely with the Guarasug’we to take back control of their land and forest to preserve their culture. Helping the Guarasug’we communities to fight wildfires is also critical for the protected area management, they will be provided annual training ahead of each fire season and equipped with water tanks and hoses. Photos: (Above) The newly discovered Golden Bat species, (Below) Sunset in the project site; both courtesy of Fundación Natura Bolivia.
Thanks to the generous support of our Board members and other supporters who cover all of our operating expenses, Rainforest Trust is able to allocate 100% of donations to conservation action. No board member receives financial benefit and our staff salaries are modest.
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