Protecting two globally recognised ecosystems of exceptional biodiversity
The project lies within a corridor between two eco-regions of significant global importance: the eastern foothills of the tropical Andes and the Great Wild Area of the Amazon, in the lowland areas of the Amazonian Andes. Here, the main drivers of deforestation include clearing land for pasture, industrial crops, illicit coca plantations and mining. These activities have become prevalent due to the lack of alternative economic opportunities in the region and are putting increasing pressure on the land and local wildlife.
for families with precarious livelihoods, such as through quinoa and honey production
increase productivity and reduce food costs for local families
including 5 full-time positions*
mitigated on average per year
protected from deforestation, including parts of the Peruvian Yungas and habitat of over 200 species
Located in the Mariscal Cáceres Province, in central-north Peru, the project spans over 53,000 hectares. The protected area forms part of a vast wildlife corridor, the Abiseo- Cóndor-Kutukú Corridor, which extends from Sangay National Park in Ecuador to the Cordillera Azul National Park in Perú. The project aims to reduce emissions associated with deforestation and land degradation, by working with the local community to implement sustainable initiatives, such as organic honey and quinoa production, effective land management, environmental education and strengthening local governance. Another core aim of the project is to maintain the water balance of the upper basin of the Huayabamba River, which supplies water for families living further downstream.
By encouraging local families to grow quinoa, an ancient and highly nutritious Andean grain, we aim to provide an alternative to cattle ranching, which is degrading the ecosystems of the High Andes.
Carlos Correa, Quinoa producer and technician at the Alto Huayabamba project
The project reduces greenhouse gases in the atmosphere by preventing deforestation and instead conserving natural ecosystems to boost carbon sequestration. By protecting the Alto Huayabamba area, the project protects many endemic and threatened animal species–like the critically endangered yellow-tailed woolly monkey– but also the services that strong and healthy ecosystems provide, in this case, filtering freshwater from the Huayabamba River. Working hand-in-hand with the local community, there are also a number of social and economic initiatives that benefit families living in the area. So far, two productive associations have been formed: one for quinoa and the other for honey. Multiple community members have also participated in different environmental education activities and 24 families have had their kitchens renovated, reducing their exposure to harmful smoke. On top of this, the project has offered a number of new jobs to local people.
We are alleviating pressure on the habitat of endemic, threatened wildlife like the yellow-tailed woolly monkey. We also prevent people from burning the high mountain grasslands or hunting of species such as deer and spectacled bears.
Marco Gutierrez, Head of the Concesión para Conservación Alto Huayabamba (CCAH)
A number of activities begin, they are designed to reduce GHG emissions and create sustainable opportunities for the local community. At this time the production of honey is a popular choice in the Yungas area of the reserve.
As part of the ISA Fund's Connexion Jaguar programme, South Pole worked with experts in the field, Panthera and AMPA, to develop this ecosystem protection project under the VCS and CCBS standards. The project creates a huge wildlife corridor from the Sangay National Park in Ecuador to the Cordillera Azul NationalPark in Perú!
The spectacled bear, South America's only bear species, is heavily threatened mainly due to habitat loss. So, we are delighted the camera traps have managed to snap this elusive bear eating his favourite plant – tasty achupalla– which grows where a road used to be, making it the perfect place to spot a hungry bear.
Materials and building support have been provided to 45 families living in the concession to upgrade their kitchens. With these new efficient cooking stoves, families limit their exposure to dangerous smoke which creates respiratory and eye problems and need to use less wood. Good for health and the forest!