04.10.2016 - Natural Sciences Sector

Ecuador and Peru present their joint proposal for the creation of the Forest of Peace Transboundary Biosphere Reserve, the first transboundary biosphere reserve in South America

Ecuador and Peru present their joint proposal for the creation of the Forest of Peace Transboundary Biosphere Reserve. © Permanent Delegation of Ecuador to UNESCO/Permanent Delegation of Peru to UNESCO

The Deputy Permanent Delegate of Ecuador to UNESCO, Ambassador Veronica Bustamante, and the Permanent Delegate of Peru to UNESCO, Ambassador Manuel Rodriguez Cuadros, officially delivered to the Secretary of the Man and the Biosphere (MAB) Programme of UNESCO, Mr Han Qunli, the joint proposal for the Bosques de Paz (Forest of Peace) Transboundary Biosphere Reserve, the first transboundary biosphere reserve in South America.

‘Forests of Peace’ covers an area of 1.6 million hectares that includes mangroves and dry forests, and is home to more than 600,000 people, who have decided to commit to the conservation and sustainable development of their environment.

The creation of this transboundary reserve is designed to achieve several specific goals which will benefit both nations. It aims to strengthen the peace agreement signed between Ecuador and Peru, conserve the native flora and fauna, serve as a laboratory for scientific research, and provide a regional platform for strengthening the management of financial resources for conservation and territorial development.

This transboundary site integrates two existing biosphere reserves: Noroeste Amotapes-Manglares, which is located in the Tumbes region of Peru and was extended in 2016, and Bosque Seco, which is located in the cantons belonging to the Bosque Seco Commonwealth of Ecuador (Avocados, Celica, Pinal, Puyango, Macara and Zapotillo) and was created in 2014.

This proposal will be evaluated by the International Advisory Committee for Biosphere Reserves, which will issue a recommendation to the International Coordination Council (ICC) of the MAB Programme, which will in turn make the final decision regarding whether to accept this site as part of the World Network of Biosphere Reserves.

The Secretary of the MAB Programme welcomed the nomination as ‘an example of cooperation between States’. The nomination is the first of its kind in South America and will make a valuable contribution to the global conservation and sustainable development agenda.

The process of creating the proposal was supported by the project ‘Biosphere Reserves as a Tool for Coastal and Island Management in the South-East Pacific Region’ (BRESEP), which is coordinated by the MAB Programme and supported by the Flemish Government of Belgium.

The overall objective of BRESEP is to create and reinforce existing biosphere reserves situated on the coastal areas and islands of the west coast of Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Panama and Peru. The project also aims to promote biosphere reserves as tools for innovative projects that bring added value to local socio-economical activities, and to sensitize and build the capacity of stakeholders in the area.




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