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Peru creates the Yellowstone of the Amazon

Il Perù ha istituito un nuovo grande parco nazionale per tutelare le tribù indigene e la fauna in via di estinzione.

The Sierra del Divisor, between Peru and Brazil, is one of the remotest areas of South America and the only mountain formation in the Peruvian Amazon forest completely detached from the Andes mountain range. Here, in the thick rainforest, there live different indigenous communities, including some unconnected tribes as well as a number of rare and endangered animal species, like jaguars (Panthera onca), bald uakaris (cacajao calvus) and giant armadillo (Priodontes maximus).

 

indigeni peruviani della tribù Ashanink
Peruvian indigenous of the Ashanink tribe

 

The area is also characterised by amazing geological formations like sleeping volcanoes and it is an important natural wildlife corridor. This natural paradise is threatened by mining and deforestation, but on 8 November the Peruvian government officially established the Sierra del Divisor national park, 1.3 million hectares of forest that are going to be entirely protected.

 

The new protected area was compared to the Yellowstone national park for its particular geological formations such as “cone” peaks and the sandstone plateaux that form unique ecological niches.

 

sierra-del-divisor
“El Cono” © Diego Perez

 

This piece of news, to which everyone has been looking forward for decades, came Friday night in a tweet by the Peruvian Minister of the environment, Manuel Pulgar-Vidal. “The creation of the Sierra del Divisor National Park is a historic event,” Pulgar-Vidal said. “It is a confirmation of the Peruvian government’s commitment to conservation, sustainable development and the fight against climate change”.

 

It is estimated that the forests of Sierra del Divisor can store about 165 million tonnes of carbon, so, the creation of this park is an important contribution to reduce emissions in view of Paris’ conference on climate.

 

In the creation of the park were involved tens of partners, from international conservation groups to local indigenous communities. The support of the public opinion was also crucial: according to a survey, 86% of Peruvians backed the creation of the protected area.

 

parco nazionale
Area of the Sierra del Divisor national park © Rainforest Trust

 

“The Sierra del Divisor is the final link in an immense protected area complex that extends from the banks of the Amazon in Brazil to the snowy peaks of the Peruvian Andes,” said Paul Salaman, CEO of Rainforest Trust, one of the associations that fought for the creation of the park. “This permanent conservation corridor is one of the greatest refuges for biodiversity on Earth”.

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