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      Biosphere Reserve Information



© Photo: R.A. Mittermeier
  General Description   The Mata Atlântica Biosphere Reserve established in 1992, is the pioneer of the Brazilian biosphere reserves. It covers important portions of the Atlantic Forest of 14 states, the State of Minas Gerais and 13 coastal states (from Ceará to Rio Grande do Sul), including the São Paulo City Green Belt. The remnants of Atlantic Forest are associated with relevant secondary forests, this forming an unique ecosystem stretching along a distance of more than 3,000 km parallel to the coast, comprising Serra Mantiqueira, Serra Geral and Serra do Mar. These very rare Atlantic Forest remnants and associated ecosystems such as mangroves, salt marsh scrublands as well as sand spits and upland grasslands are under pressure from the highest populated areas in the country. In order to respond to the special need for large-scale ecosystem conservation and management, a wide range of management, scientific and community organizations have joined together in setting up the Mata Atlántica Biosphere Reserve system. Almost all States participating already have state-level committees. The main aim is to conserve and restore ecological corridors as well as significant portions of the Atlantic Forest’s biological diversity, which is among the richest in the world. Almost 100 million people (2002) live in the urban and industrial areas of 3,000 out of the 5,507 municipalities within this Biosphere Reserve. In 1993, the Sao Paulo City’s Green Belt Biosphere Reserve was added as an integrate part of the Mata Atlántica Biosphere Reserve, covering another 72 municipalities. In addition to promote improved protection of the forest ecosystem remnants and the biodiversity, another major objective is to develop sustainable uses and social practices.
  Major ecosystem type   Tropical humid forests with coastal/marine component;
Mixed mountain and highland systems
  Major habitats & land cover types   Moist forest; sub-tropical semi-deciduous forest with Araucaria angustifolia, Podocarpus lambertii, Drimys brasiliensis etc.; Araucaria and Podocarpus conifer forest; upland meadows with grasses and small heaths including species such as Cortaderia modesta, Chusquea pinifolia and Cladium eosifobium sp.; cerrado forest characterized by Sclerolobium aureum, Machaerium opacum, Dalbergia violacea and Bowdichia virgilioides; gallery forest bordering rivers and streams with Ilex paraguarensis, Xylosma venosa and Spondias lutea; holm forest; coastal forest of several types; mangrove with Rhizophora mangle, Avicennia tomentosa, Laguncularia racemosa and Hibiscus riliaceus; lagoons with Typha domingensis, Claudium jamaicense, Scirpus spp. etc. beaches, sand dunes; mountains; caves; islands
São Paulo City Green Belt: Coastal and inland moist forests; mangroves; beaches; restinga (beach vegetation); marine ecosystems; islands and sea rocks; cerrado (savanna); rivers and water reservoirs; riparian ecosystems; lagoons; caves; wetlands; urban areas
  Location   02°50' to 33°45'S; 34°45' to 55°15'W
  Area (hectares)    
  Total   29,473,484
  Core area(s)   4,052,544
  Buffer zone(s)   12,646,302
  Transition area(s) when given   12,774,638
  Altitude (metres above sea level)   -50 to +2,897
  Year designated   1993, extension 2002
  Administrative authorities   Conselho Nacional da Reserva da Biosfera da Mata Atlântica Forest Institute of São Paulo (Instituto Florestal)
  Brief description   Water pollution
Effects of acidic deposition and atmospheric pollutants
Botanic research
Comparative ecology
Macro-zoning of coastal region
Agro-ecological zoning
Land use and management
São Paulo City Green Belt:
Research: Forests and biodiversity
Climate and pollution
Urban growth
Water resources
Environmental health
Monitoring: Water resources
Forest cover
Urban sprawl
Protected areas
Deforestation trends
Municipalities and urban blocks
Agricultural use
Sustainable activities: Adolescents eco-job training
Fostering of eco-job market
Support to the environmental services provided by the city
Sustainable tourism
  Specific variables...    
  Abiotic   Acidic deposition/Acid rain, climate, hydrology, monitoring/methodologies, pollution, pollutants, topography.
  Biodiversity   Biodiversity, coastal/marine, conservation, degraded areas, ecology, flora, forest systems, methodologies, natural resources.
  Socio-economic   Agriculture/Production systems, capacity building, forestry, livelihood measures, monitoring methodologies, tourism, traditional practices/ethnology/traditional knowledge, transport.
  Integrated monitoring   Institutional and legal aspects, integrated studies/interdisciplinaty, land use/land cover, management issues, monitoring/methodologies, planning and zoning measures/zonation, sustainable development/sustainable use, urban systems/towns/cities.
  Contact address   Clayton Ferreira Lino
National Council of Mata Atlântica (Atlantic Forest) Biosphere Reserve
Rua João Julião 296/11A
01323-020 São Paulo
  Telephone   (55 11) 2232 5728
  Fax   (55.11) 2231 8555 265
  Contact address   Denise Rambaldi
Sao Paulo City Green Belt Biosphere Reserve
Rua do Horto, 931
02377-000 Sao Paulo - SP
  Telephone   (55 11) 2232 3116
(55.11) 2231 8113
  Fax   (55.11) 2232 5767
(55.11) 2232 3116
  Web site

Last updated: 08/03/2011

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