Peruvian Conservation Caucus Members Explore “Green Growth” Around Amazon Rainforests

March 16, 2018
Peruvian Conservation Caucus Members Explore “Green Growth” Around Amazon Rainforests

The ICCF Group and ICCF Peru, on March 15-17, led a multi-party delegation of members of the Peruvian Conservation Caucus on a field mission to the Amazonian city of Tarapoto to observe conditions and meet with local experts.

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The ICCF Group and ICCF Peru, on March 15-17, led a multi-party delegation of members of the Peruvian Conservation Caucus on a field mission to the Amazonian city of Tarapoto to observe conditions and meet with local experts on issues related to national parks and sustainable "green growth" initiatives in buffer zones around the park.

The delegation visited the Center for Research in Tropical Crops, whose major focus is on breeding better varieties of cacao, a key local product. There, the delegation inspected the center’s laboratories and learned about its important work.

The delegation also met with senior park officials from Peru’s National Service of Natural Areas Protected by the State (SERNANP) for extensive briefings on two large parks near Tarapoto. These parks are home to some of the best original Amazonian forests in Peru, having remained in good condition despite past issues with drug traffickers. Economic development in buffer areas around parks has brought with it new challenges, but increased access for local law enforcement has forced narcotics traffickers to shift operations elsewhere. As a result, many coca growers have switched to legal, sustainable crops. One such group with whom the delegation met is Peru’s largest cacao growers’ cooperative, which sells more than $2 million a year in products to the European Union market.

Local officials welcomed this congressional visit with enthusiasm, and caucus members expressed a sense of common cause as a result of the visit. Members also said they look forward to future activities of The ICCF Group such as visits to national parks including in Madre de Dios, a regional meeting on forestry to be held in Colombia next month, and a possible conservation caucus summit in Washington later this year.

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