The Kayapo Indigenous Territories

The Kayapo Indigenous Territories

Case Study by: Austin Perez In one of the world’s most intense deforestation zones, the southeastern Amazon, nearly 11 million hectares of rainforest survives within the Kayapo indigenous territories. The Kayapo are an indigenous group of Brazil with a population of approximately 7,000 people whom occupy five contiguous and legally ratified indigenous territories in the Xingu River Basin. Despite intensifying external pressure from outsiders seeking access to their land and natural resources in a region that has otherwise been cleared for ranching, roads and towns, the Kayapo have managed to protect and maintain nearly all the forest encompassed within their territories. The Kayapo are granted permanent and exclusive usufruct rights to their lands under the category of “indigenous territory’ by the Brazilian constitution. They fight to defend their land and forest because it is the basis of their livelihood and society. Their legally ratified territories comprise the largest block of intact tropical forest under some form of protection in the world. The warrior ancestors of today’s Kayapo who inhabit the block of five contiguous Kayapo territories in the south of Para and north of Mato Grosso states were contacted in the 1950’s and 1960’s. Government officials and missionaries managed to approach them during the 1960’s by introducing prized items from the outside such as metal tools and pots. Soon the Kayapo’s desire for such items and many others including guns, fishing gear, radios and boats overcame their tendency to make war on all outsiders and among themselves. They also needed medical care to treat introduced diseases that were decimating them. The Kayapo, therefore, became “pacified”. However, they continued to...
Victoria

Victoria

Case Study by: Austin Perez Victoria, the capital city of the province of British Columbia, is located on the southern tip of Vancouver Island off of the western coast of Canada. The Victoria region, known as the Capital Regional District (CRD), has a population of 375,000 people, making it the 15th most populous metropolitan area in Canada. The region is well known for its beautiful architecture with a distinct British influence reminiscent of the Victorian era, and is renowned for its lush gardens and green spaces scattered all over the region. With its dense forests, picturesque coastline, and abundant greenery, the CRD is highly regarded for its natural beauty. Like a growing number of other regions around the world, the CRD places a major emphasis on promoting sustainability, ecological integrity, and the conservation of its natural environment. However, the CRD has gone above and beyond the norm in developing its regional conservation strategy by creating a unique policy that features an extraordinary commitment to examining the application of the Nature Needs Half vision by promoting ecological connectivity and striving to manage at least half of the region’s land and water base for the conservation of nature. Victoria City View © Ron Niebrugge The CRD has developed a policy entitled the Regional Parks Strategic Plan for 2012-2021 (RPSP), which is a management strategy for the region’s parks and trails for the next ten years. The RPSP and its budget have now been formally approved by the CRD Board of Directors and placed into effect, giving the CRD a unique and progressive policy that emphasizes connectivity and ecosystem health in a...
Seychelles

Seychelles

Case Study by: Austin Perez The Republic of Seychelles is a small island nation consisting of an archipelago of 115 islands in the Indian Ocean off the eastern coast of Africa. The natural environment of Seychelles is a stunningly beautiful topical paradise, with crystal clear blue water and pristine white sand beaches. The economy of Seychelles is largely dependent on preserving a healthy natural environment for tourism purposes and to maintain sustainable fisheries, and the Seychellois people are deeply interconnected with the wild nature of the island ecosystems in their every day lives. The Seychelles government has therefore taken significant action to establish a nation that is committed to preserving and protecting its natural environment by enacting policies that protect more than half of the nation’s total terrestrial land area and 30% of its marine territory by law. The government of Seychelles has demonstrated its dedication to conserving and protecting its natural environment by enacting laws and policies that work to ensure the long-term vitality and preservation of its wild nature. The Constitution of the Republic of Seychelles, which was enacted in 1993, guarantees its citizens the right to a clean environment, and at the same time also obliges its citizens to work to protect the Seychelles’ natural environment. Article 38 of the Constitution of Seychelles states that it is “the right of every person to live in and enjoy a clean, healthy, and ecologically balanced environment,” and that that the state undertakes the responsibility of taking measures to protect, preserve, and improve the environment and to ensure the judicious and sustainable usage and management of Seychelles’ natural resources....
Oslo

Oslo

Case Study by: Austin Perez Norway’s capital city, Oslo, is a beautiful and modern European metropolis that is often distinguished for its world-renowned museums and galleries and for being one of the most affluent cities in all of Europe. Oslo is the most populous city in Norway and the third largest city in Scandinavia with over 600,000 residents living within the municipality and over 1.4 million people residing in the metropolitan area. Oslo is also the economic and governmental center of Norway, and it is an important hub for maritime industries and trade throughout Europe. However, in addition to being a contemporary metropolis and flourishing European capital, Oslo has also made an extraordinary commitment to preserving its areas of wild nature. Approximately two-thirds (307 km2) of Oslo’s total land area (454 km2) is covered by protected forest areas, hills, and waterways, and the City Government for the City of Oslo has enacted very ambitious environmental policies that demonstrate its commitment to ensuring that these areas of wild nature are preserved. Oslo has epitomized the vision of Nature Needs Half by creating an environmental policy that strives to conserve and strengthen the ecosystems and wild nature that exist within its urban environment. Oslo has a gorgeously unique geographic location, as it occupies a piece of land at the tip of a fjord that extends right into the heart of the city. Eight beautiful rivers run from the fjord into the belt of forests and lakes that surround the city. The central third of the municipality’s land area consists of the built-up infrastructure of the city that contains almost all of...
Hong Kong

Hong Kong

Case Study by: Austin Perez When most people think of Hong Kong, they likely often picture an image of a gorgeous skyline and the busy streets of a thriving metropolis. With a population of over 7 million people in an area of only about 1,000 km2, Hong Kong is certainly a bustling modern city with a dense population, a flourishing economy, and some of the world’s most impressive infrastructure. However, despite its dense population and pressure to develop its available lands for continued economic growth, Hong Kong has made a tremendous commitment to preserve wild nature in the region and thereby establish one of the most expansive urban wildlife conservation policies in the world. Hong Kong Cityscape at night Beyond the skyscrapers of the city center, Hong Kong has a vibrant and beautiful natural environment that is home to a rich diversity of wildlife, and its government has placed a major emphasis on ensuring the preservation of Hong Kong’s “urban wilderness.”  In total, Hong Kong has designated about 41% of its land area and about 1.5% of its marine environment as protected areas, which makes Hong Kong an excellent example of how the vision of Nature Needs Half can be applied in the urban environment of a large modern city. Following the wartime period in the 1940’s, Hong Kong’s environment was largely decimated and the region was almost completely deforested due to a demand for timber during the war. In addition, the rapid population growth, urban encroachment, and unplanned recreation use in the region in the middle of the 20th century further deteriorated Hong Kong’s natural environment. However, the...
Saving space for a threatened species in Boulder, CO

Saving space for a threatened species in Boulder, CO

This is the 2nd out of 5 proposed case studies on Boulder, Colorado produced by multimedia journalist Morgan Heim. Boulder is a leading example of the Nature Needs Half vision with 68% of the county’s land protected. The northern leopard frog is a rare find any more in the American West, but in Boulder, a conservation ethic, on par with the concept of Nature Needs Half, has protected crucial habitat that allows these frogs to still survive. Join Morgan as she ventures out with biologist and frog wrangler Christine Prah in search of these elusive and threatened little frogs. > Read the Boulder case study & watch the Conservation Legacy video Saving Space for the Little Things | Nature Needs Half from The WILD Foundation on...
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