26 Oct 2010

Latin American biodiversity conservation and development awards 2010

By Martin Fowlie
The 2010 Awards for Biodiversity Conservation and Development in Latin America have been presented at a special event held at the CBD meeting in Nagoya, Japan. The prizes, worth Є7,000 each, are granted by SEO / BirdLife (Spanish Partner) and BirdLife International with the support of the Fundación Biodiversidad. This year’s two winning projects are aimed at the conservation and development of an Important Bird Area (IBA), where local communities play a vital role, implementing efficient and innovative activities and good management practices as a way of improving their livelihoods. The two awards go to projects in Brazil and Ecuador and are:
  • Sustainable use of forests and organic cocoa production through farmer cooperatives in the Serra das Lontras-Una forest complex, Bahia Province, Brazil:  led by SAVE Brasil (BirdLife Partner)
  • Environmental management for local groups at three IBAs in the northwest of Pichincha, Ecuador led by Aves & Conservación (BirdLife Partner)
With these awards, SEO/BirdLife is highlighting the strong links that exist between biodiversity conservation and poverty reduction, one of the key issues being discussed at the CBD meeting in Nagoya. "These awards aim to raise awareness of the immense possibilities offered by biodiversity to improve the quality of life of the people who depend most directly on natural resources. They show that thanks to the many years of hard work and the joint commitment between communities living in areas of high biodiversity and these NGOs, it is possible to achieve tangible benefits through new development opportunities”, said Alejandro Sanchez, Acting Executive Director SEO/BirdLife, speaking at the awards ceremony. "These two projects are examples of clear and practical conservation being undertaken for biodiversity at critical sites by working with local communities. The two winning projects are also being developed in countries with high biodiversity", said Andrés Bosso, Executive Director of Aves Argentinas and President of the Americas Regional Committee of BirdLife International. Find out more about the Ecuador project by clicking here Find out about Serra das Lontras and Una IBAs Image information: Aves&Conservación receiving award from Fundación Biodiversidad. From left to right: Ana E. Agreda, Project Director at Aves&Conservación; Cecilia Pacheco, Local Government Councilor and former President of Aves&Conservación; Marta Garcia Pérez, Subdirectora General de Biodiversidad, Ministry of Environment, Rural Affairs and Marine; Ana Leyva, CEO of Fundación Biodiversidad.