Tierramerica

Will New Climate Treaty Be a Thriller, or Shaggy Dog Story?

This December, 195 nations plus the European Union will meet in Lima for two weeks for the crucial U.N. Conference of the Parties on Climate Change, known as COP 20. The hope in Lima is to produce the first complete draft of a new global climate agreement.

El Salvador Restores Biodiversity in the Face of Climate Change

Carlos Menjívar has been ferrying people in his boat for 20 years in this fishing village in western El Salvador surrounded by ocean, mangroves and wetlands, which is suffering the effects of environmental degradation.

Using Phytotechnology to Remedy Damage Caused by Mining

Combating the negative effects of its own production processes is one of the challenges facing the mining industry, one of the pillars of the Chilean economy.

Panama’s Indigenous People Want to Harness the Riches of Their Forests

For indigenous people in Panama, the rainforest where they live is not only their habitat but also their spiritual home, and their link to nature and their ancestors. The forest holds part of their essence and their identity.

Protecting Biodiversity in Costa Rica’s Thermal Convection Dome in the Pacific

The vast habitat known as the Costa Rican Thermal Convection Dome in the eastern Pacific Ocean will finally become a protected zone, over 50 years after it was first identified as one of the planet’s most biodiversity-rich marine areas.

Drought Plagues Brazil’s Richest Metropolis

Agricultural losses are no longer the most visible effect of the drought plaguing Brazil’s most developed region. Now the energy crisis and the threat of water shortages in the city of São Paulo are painful reminders of just how dependent Brazilians are on regular rainfall.

Fracking Fractures Argentina’s Energy Development

Unconventional oil and gas reserves in Vaca Muerta in southwest Argentina hold out the promise of energy self-sufficiency and development for the country. But the fracking technique used to extract this treasure from underground rocks could be used at a huge cost.

Cuba’s Sugar Industry to Use Bagasse for Bioenergy

Cuba’s sugar industry hopes to become the main source of clean energy in the country as part of a programme to develop renewable sources aimed at reducing dependence on imported fossil fuels and protecting the environment.

Biodiversity Offsetting Advances in Latin America Amidst Controversy

Compensation for biodiversity loss, which is taking its first steps in Latin America, is criticised by social organisations for “commodifying” nature and failing to remedy the impacts of extractive industries and other activities that destroy natural areas and wildlife.

Salvadoran Farmers Stake Their Bets on Sustainable Development

Peasant farmers from one of El Salvador’s most fragile coastal areas are implementing a model of sustainable economic growth that respects the environment and offers people education and security as keys to give the wetland region a boost.

Mexico’s Cocopah People Refuse to Disappear

In their language, Cocopah means “river people”. For over 500 years the members of this Amerindian group have lived along the lower Colorado River and delta in the Mexican states of Baja California and Sonora and the U.S. state of Arizona.

Brazil to Monitor Improvement of Water Quality in Latin America

Problems in access to quality drinking water, supply shortages and inadequate sanitation are challenges facing development and the fight against poverty in Latin America. A new regional centre based in Brazil will monitor water to improve its management.

Threat of Hydropower Dams Still Looms in Chile’s Patagonia

After its victory in a nearly decade-long struggle against HidroAysén, a project that would have built five large hydroelectric dams on wilderness rivers, Chile’s Patagonia region is gearing up for a new battle: blocking a quiet attempt to build a dam on the Cuervo River.

It Takes More than Two to Tango – or to Clean up Argentina’s Riachuelo River

Immortalised by a famous tango, the “Niebla del riachuelo” (Mist over the Riachuelo river) has begun to dissipate over Argentina’s most polluted river, much of which is lined by factories and slums. But two centuries of neglect and a complex web of political and economic interests are hindering a clean-up plan that requires a broad, concerted effort.

Eco-Friendly Agriculture Puts Down Roots in Spain

José María Gómez squats and pulls up a bunch of carrots from the soil as well as a few leeks. This farmer from southern Spain believes organic farming is more than just not using pesticides and other chemicals – it’s a way of life, he says, which requires creativity and respect for nature.

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