Friday, 1 December 2006

It's not all doom and gloom

My friend Bob suggested I should write something a bit more cheerful for this festive season approaching. Well we have some good news. I have just returned for a series of meetings with our local partners in South America, and we have agreed to help fund the purchase of large tracts of threatened habitats in Brazil, Argentina and Paraguay. In Paraguay I attended an government reception to mark the official launch of the first Pantanal Reserve in Paraguay, which was initiated with funds from World Land Trust supporters. The Netherlands Committee for IUCN has also provided funds, and in a very enthusiastic speech, His Excellency Sr Castiglione, the Vice-President of Paraguay paid tribute to the individual donors who had made this possible. Similarly at a meeting held in Posadas, the capital of Misiones Province of Argentina, the Minister for the Environment, expressed his enthusiasm for working with the World Land Trust to creat a private nature reserve which will form a corridor between protected areas.

A flying visit to the extreme northwest of Paraguay identified an important area of Dry Chaco -- inhabited by about 10 species of armadillo as well as various Chaco endemics such as the Chacoan peccary. Our Paraguayan partners are now negotiating the purchase of at least 10,000 hectares of this important habitat, which again form a corridor between existing protected areas.

The land purchase prices range between $20 and $300, but at any of these prices (which depend on factors such as accessibility, habitat, rainfall) they are incredible value for money -- a tenth of the price of land in Britain, with perhaps 10 or 100 times as many species.

So that's the good news. The other good news is that you, we, can all do something about it. This year has seen a spectacular growth in the World Land Trust, and we expect that to continue next year, with more and more critical land purchase for conservation. But there is less and less to save, so act NOW.

1 comment:

  1. Hi people
    I do not know what to give for Christmas of the to friends, advise something ....