tagged w/ Peru
"Mahogany is the crown jewel of the Amazon, soaring in magnificent buttressed columns high into the forest canopy. Its rich, red grain and durability make it one of the most coveted building materials on Earth, favored by master craftsmen, a symbol of wealth and power. A single tree can fetch tens of thousands of dollars on the international market by the time its finished wood reaches showroom floors in the United States or Europe.
"After 2001, the year Brazil declared a moratorium on logging big-leaf mahogany, Peru emerged as one of the world’s largest suppliers. The rush for 'red gold,' as mahogany is sometimes called, has left many of Peru's watersheds—such as the Alto Tamaya, homeland of a group of Asheninka Indians—stripped of their most valuable trees. The last stands of mahogany, as well as Spanish cedar, are now nearly all restricted to Indian lands, national parks, and territorial reserves set aside to protect isolated tribes.
"As a result, loggers are now taking aim at other canopy giants few of us have ever heard of—copaiba, ishpingo, shihuahuaco, capirona—which are finding their way into our homes as bedroom sets, cabinets, flooring, and patio decks. These lesser known varieties have even fewer protections than the more charismatic, pricier ones, like mahogany, but they’re often more crucial to forest ecosystems. As loggers move down the list from one species to the next, they’re cutting more trees to make up for diminishing returns, threatening critical habitats in the process. Primates, birds, and amphibians that make their homes in the upper stories of the forest are at increasing risk. Indigenous communities are in turmoil, divided between those favoring conservation and those looking for fast cash. And some of the world’s most isolated tribes are in flight from the whine of chain saws and the terrifying crash of centuries-old leviathans hitting the ground."
Read rest at link."Mahogany is the crown jewel of the Amazon, soaring in magnificent buttressed... more
1 month ago
Mexican experts found a cemetery a few thousand years old in the state of Sonora that has features never seen before in that region and extending the zone of influence of the Mesoamerican peoples, said archaeologists from the Institute National Anthropology and History (INAH).
A mere 300 meters from the village of Onavas, southern Sonora, was an outdoor grave site, the first pre-Hispanic cemetery,of that state found with burials composed of 25 individuals, 13 of whom have intentional skull deformation, INAH said in a statement.
Five individuals with cranial deformation also have dental mutilation. These cultural practices are similar to those of pre-Hispanic groups in southern Sinaloa and northern Nayarit, but had not been recorded in Sonora, detailed the Institute.
more at link...Mexican experts found a cemetery a few thousand years old in the state of Sonora that... more
Today Talisman Energy (TLM) announced its decision to cease oil exploration activities in the Peruvian Amazon and to exit the country upon completion of ongoing commercial transactions.
"We have fought long and hard against Talisman's drilling in our territory because of the negative environmental and social impacts we have seen from oil drilling around the world," said Peas Peas Ayui, President of the National Achuar Federation of Peru (FENAP). "Now that Talisman is leaving we can focus on achieving our own vision for development and leave a healthy territory for future generations."
Talisman is the fifth oil company to withdraw from controversial Block 64, located in the heart of indigenous Achuar territory in a remote and bio diverse region of the Amazon rainforest. Talisman has been exploring in Peru since 2004 and has come under increased pressure by human rights groups and shareholders for operating without Achuar consent.
"Talisman has had to face up to what the Achuar told them when they first invested in Block 64: The company cannot drill without the consent of the Achuar people," said Gregor MacLennan, Peru Program Coordinator at Amazon Watch. "Talisman's exit sends a clear message to the oil industry: Trampling indigenous rights in the rush to exploit marginal oil reserves in the Amazon rainforest is not an option."
Despite Talisman's claim of attaining local support from communities and signing good neighbor agreements with 66 communities downriver from their operations, the company never had the consent of the majority of communities living within Block 64. Talisman first invested in Peru one year after leaving Sudan and became sole operator in 2007, shortly after John Manzoni's appointment as CEO. Manzoni was replaced by ex-TransCanada CEO Hans Kvisle on Monday this week.
"We are the owners and the original people of this land," said Peas Ayui. "No outside person or company may enter our territory by force, without consultation and without asking us. We have been fighting against oil development on our land for 17 years and we maintain the same vision to protect our territory and resources for future generations. Let this be a clear message to all oil, mining and logging companies: we will never offer up our natural wealth so that they can extract our resources and contaminate our land."
More at the linkToday Talisman Energy (TLM) announced its decision to cease oil exploration activities... more
Thousands of crustaceans were found dead off the coast of Lima following the mystery mass death of dolphins and pelicans, the Peruvian Navy said Friday.
The cause of death is under investigation, said Industry and Fishing Minister Gladys Triveno, warning that "it would be premature to give a reason for this phenomenon."
The Navy said it presented a report on the find to the Agency of Environmental Evaluation and Control to determine the cause.
Biologist Yuri Hooker of Cayetano Heredia University said the species found on Pucusana Beach, 60 kilometers (37 miles) south of Lima, was a type of red krill about three centimeters (1.2 inches) long.
"They live mostly along the coast of Chile up to the coast of northern Peru. What is happening is that these crustaceans are being affected by the warming of Pacific waters in the north of the country," he said, adding that the phenomenon occurs "with some frequency."
Hooker explained that the warmer temperatures led the shrimp-like creatures that usually live far away from the coast to move in closer to land, where they died.
Nearly 900 dolphins washed up along Peru's northern coast between February and April. A government study said the marine mammals died of natural causes, while environmental groups insist the massive toll was linked to offshore oil exploration in the area.
Peruvian officials have suggested that the dolphins, along with 5,000 dead sea birds -- mostly pelicans -- died due to the effects of rising temperatures in Pacific waters, including the southern migration of fish eaten by the birds.
More at the linkThousands of crustaceans were found dead off the coast of Lima following the mystery... more
191,000 people are homeless or have have suffered "significant" damage due to flooding in the Amazon region of eastern Peru, reports the Associated Press.
The flooding is considered the worst in 30 years, inundating croplands and communities along the Amazon River and its tributaries. Last month the Peruvian government declared a state of emergency in Loreto, a region that borders Ecuador, Colombia, and Brazil. Now there are reports of a leptospirosis outbreak, which has already killed three people. Hundreds of others have been hospitalized with skin, intestinal, and respiratory problems.
Damage has been exacerbated by new developments in floodplain areas as well as higher than usual rainfall.
Scientists have warned that Peru is likely to experience increased incidence of flooding and drought as a result of climate change. Last week the country adopted a resolution to reduce its own greenhouse gas emissions.
"If we don't do something we will have problems with water supplies along the coasts, we know there will be more droughts, more rains ... we are already seeing temperature changes," Mariano Felipe Soldan, head of the government's strategic planning office, told Reuters.
Read more: http://news.mongabay.com/2012/0502-peru-amazon-flooding.html#ixzz1tmAjDCeI
More at the link:
http://lh6.ggpht.com/-kZe8MuFoyps/T5R-Ru-HV1I/AAAAAAAAGXI/NkqP3AfAHro/image%25255B5%25255D.png?imgmax=800191,000 people are homeless or have have suffered "significant" damage due... more
A virus or seismic oil exploration are being examined as possible causes
The government of Peru is investigating the deaths of more than 500 pelicans along a 70km (40-mile) stretch of the country's northern coast.
Officials say most appeared to have died on shore over the past few days.
Scientists have also found the carcasses of 54 boobies, several sea lions and a turtle.
They were found in the same region where some 800 dolphins washed ashore earlier this year. The cause of their death is still being investigated.
The Peruvian government said it was "deeply worried".
A preliminary report said that there was no evidence to show the pelicans had died at sea, but rather on the beach where they were found.
But it said further tests would be needed to establish the cause of death.
The Peruvian Maritime Institute (Imarpe) said so far 538 dead pelicans and 54 boobies had been found in various stages of decomposition, although most appeared to have died recently.
In addition, five badly decomposed sea lions and a turtle carcass had been found on shore, Imarpe said.
Local media reports suggest more than 1,200 dead pelicans have been found in the Piura and Lambayeque regions.
Between January and April of this year, some 800 dead dolphins washed ashore in Lambayeque, according to government figures.
Peru's Deputy Minister for Natural Resource Development, Gabriel Quijandria Acosta, said a virus might have killed the dolphins.
A viral epidemic outbreak was linked to similar deaths of marine wildlife in Peru in the past, as well as in Mexico and the United States.
Analysis on the dolphins so far suggested they had contracted a morbillivirus, which belongs to the same group as the measles virus in humans, Stefan Austermuehle of a local NGO, Mundo Azul, told the BBC.
"We know that in other cases in the United States up to 50% of populations were killed by the virus," he said.
"What we also know...is that in previous cases animals that have higher loads of pollutants in their body will fall easier victims to these kind of diseases because their immune system is weakened."
Imarpe scientists said results of tests carried out on the dead dolphins would be released in the coming days.
More at the linkA virus or seismic oil exploration are being examined as possible causes
Peru investigates mystery pelican deaths
By Marilia Brocchetto, CNN
updated 10:29 AM EDT, Mon April 30, 2012
Mass dolphin die-off in Peru
Hundreds of dead birds are found on shore, authorities say
It's not clear what killed them
The discovery of the dead birds comes weeks after hundreds of dead dolphins were found
The dolphin deaths remain a mystery
(CNN) -- Authorities in Peru are investigating the death of over 538 pelicans, along with other birds, on the northern coast of the country, the Peruvian ministry of production said Sunday.
The new environmental investigation comes on the heels of an incident earlier in April when 877 dolphins washed up dead on the same stretch of coast.
It was not immediately clear if the deaths were connected.
The birds appear to have died on the beach, and more tests are needed to determine the cause of death, the ministry of production said.
The Peruvian Sea Institute surveyed about 43 miles (70km) of beach coastline on Sunday and estimated that 592 birds were dead along the shore.
State-run TV Peru estimated that up to 1,200 birds had been found dead on the 100 miles (160km) of northern shoreline extending from Punta Negra in Piura to San José in the state of Lambayeque.
The deaths began less than two weeks ago, local fishermen say.
The investigation into the mystery surrounding the dolphins is still ongoing. Peruvian Deputy Environment Minister Gabriel Quijandria told CNN the dolphins may have died from an outbreak of Morbillivirus or Brucella bacteria.
The Peruvian government has put together a panel from different ministries to analyze a report by the Peruvian Sea Institute (IMARPE). Officials have been able to conclude that the dolphins' deaths were not due to lack of food, interaction with fisheries, poisoning with pesticides, biotoxin poisoning or contamination by heavy metals.
"When you have something this large, my gut would tell me that there's something traumatic that happened," Sue Rocca, a marine biologist with the Whale and Dolphin Conservation Society, told CNN. She raised a number of possibilities as to what could have killed the animals, including acoustic trauma.
Preliminary reports ruled out that seismic sound waves created by oil exploration in that stretch of sea could have killed the birds, the environment ministry said.
They also expressed concern for the fishermen in the area and restated their commitment to protecting the country's marine ecosystem.
Click on photo to view video
Peru investigates mystery pelican deaths
By Marilia Brocchetto,... more
2012 video interview with Tampa Bay Times reporter Craig PIttman, author of The Scent of Scandal, an orchid import mystery, conducted by Mr Media, Bob Andelman. http://www.mrmedia.com/?p=45592012 video interview with Tampa Bay Times reporter Craig PIttman, author of The Scent... more
Talisman Energy and other corporations have set their sights on the Achuar cultural lands in Peru. This video made by the Achuar shows their life in pursuit of living with nature and their resistance to the oil companies looking to drill there. This is part of a global assault being waged upon indigenous people by oil and mining companies intent on stealing their resources and their cultures while totally ignoring their imput. Below will be a link to a petition you can sign to show support for the Achuar and other ways you can become involved in standing with them to preserve this beautiful land.Talisman Energy and other corporations have set their sights on the Achuar cultural... more
When a retired fisherman called to report that about 1,500 dolphins had washed up dead on Peru’s northern coast, veterinarian Carlos Yaipén’s first reaction was, “That’s impossible.” But when Yaipén traveled up the coast last week, he counted 615 dead dolphins along a 135-kilometer stretch of coastline. Now, the death toll could be as high as 2,800, based on volunteers’ counts. Peru's massive dolphin die-off is among the largest ever reported worldwide. The strandings, which began in January, are a marine mystery that may never be unraveled. The causes could be acoustic impact from testing for oil or perhaps an unknown disease. In addition, stress or toxic contaminants can make marine mammals more vulnerable to pathogens such as viruses, said Peter Ross, a research scientist at Canada’s Institute of Ocean
More at the linkWhen a retired fisherman called to report that about 1,500 dolphins had washed up dead... more
Cumbia Road from ARTURO ALMANZA on Vimeo.
Cumbia Road from ARTURO ALMANZA on Vimeo.
a Journey to the heart of the Andes by the misterious Roads of the Cumbia. "Vacilando con Ayahausca" cover by BARETO based on the legendary song of Juaneco and his combo.
Video: Arturo Almanza www.arturoalmanza.tk
Joaquín Mariátegui – Primera Guitarra
Rolando Galardo – Guitarra Rítmica
Jorge Giraldo – Bajo
Sergio Sarria – Percusión
Jorge Olazo – Batería y Timbales
David Haddad – Tumbadoras
David Cabrejos – Saxo
Rafael Miranda – Saxo
Angel Irujo – TrompetaCumbia Road from ARTURO ALMANZA on Vimeo.
Cumbia Road from ARTURO ALMANZA on Vimeo.... more
1 year ago
Humans are frequently blamed for deforestation and the destruction of environments, yet there are also examples of peoples and cultures around the world that have learned to manage and conserve the precious resources around them. The Yanesha of the upper Peruvian Amazon and the Tibetans of the Himalayas are two groups of indigenous peoples carrying on traditional ways of life, even in the face of rapid environmental changes.
Over the last 40 years, Dr. Jan Salick, senior curator and ethnobotanist with the William L. Brown Center of the Missouri Botanical Garden has worked with these two cultures.
She explains how their traditional knowledge and practices hold the key to conserving, managing and even creating new biodiversity in a paper released in the new text, "Biodiversity in Agriculture: Domestication, Evolution, and Sustainability," published by Cambridge University Press.
The Yanesha and Tibetans are dramatically different peoples living in radically dissimilar environments, but both cultures utilize and highly value plant biodiversity for their food, shelters, clothing and medicines.
"Both cultures use traditional knowledge to create, manage and conserve this biodiversity, and both are learning to adapt to and mitigate the effects of climate change," said Salick.
"They have much to teach and to offer the world if we can successfully learn to integrate science and traditional knowledge."
The Yanesha live a few hundred meters above sea level at the headwaters of the Amazon basin in central Peru. The people possess traditional knowledge about one of the most diverse tropical rainforests in the world. Salick studied the cocona (Solanum sessiliflorum), a fruit native to the upper Amazon, nutritionally important especially for women and children.
She found the Yanesha have increased the genetic diversity of the species over time through preferential selection of oddly sized and shaped fruits.
"In the case of cocona, fruits produced by seed look like fruits of the mother plant, regardless of the pollen donor-this is known as maternal inheritance," said Salick. "The Yanesha appreciate this inheritance, which gives them security in knowing exactly what they will harvest when they plant seeds.
Amazonian peoples are selecting not only physical plant characteristics that they like (fruit), but also plant breeding systems to perpetuate them. We can admire and emulate how these people domesticate plants, create biodiversity and manage it to sustain their future."
The Yanesha also rely on species richness and diversity in indigenous agriculture and forestry management. They plant a diversity of more than 75 species of crops in home gardens and more than 125 species in swidden fields (an ecological and sustainable system of traditional agriculture) to protect against potential crop destruction from pests, disease or weather.
Their agrobiodiversity includes species rarely grown outside of indigenous agriculture. Studies have concluded that the species diversity in indigenous agriculture is unparalleled in modern agriculture and forestry, which often reduces natural diversity rather than enhancing it. As the fragility of our modern monocultures becomes increasingly apparent, agriculture and forestry can learn from and apply traditional knowledge about agrobiodiversity such as intercropping, crop rotations and agroforestry.
INDIGENOUS PEOPLES AT FOREFRONT OF CLIMATE CHANGE OFFER
LESSONS ON CONSERVING AND MANAGING PLANT BIODIVERSITY
Paper Highlights 40 Years of Research on Plant Use by
Indigenous Peoples In Peruvian Amazon and Tibet
More at the linkHumans are frequently blamed for deforestation and the destruction of environments,... more
Earlier this year, the administration of the outgoing Peruvian President slipped in a decree that opened the door for GM seeds. But the subsequent outcry forced not only the resignation of the Agriculture Minister who'd introduced the decree, but also a 10-year ban on GMOs. But that ban wasn't signed into law by the outgoing Administration, so in November the new Peruvian Congress overwhelmingly approved the ban once again. Now the new law has been published in the Official Gazette with the support of the new Peruvian President, a known opponent of GMOs.
Peru Approves Moratorium on GM Crops
THIRD WORLD NETWORK BIOSAFETY INFORMATION SERVICE
Dear Friends and colleagues,
Below is an unofficial translation of a news article on the topic published in Spanish. For more news on the moratorium, see:
With best wishes,
Third World Network
131 Jalan Macalister,
Website: www.biosafety-info.net and www.twnside.org.sg
To subscribe to other TWN information lists:www.twnnews.net
Peru approves law banning GM production for 10 years
Peruvian President Ollanta Humala and Congress have heard the cries of Peruvian farmers and have banned GMOs for ten years.
The effects of GM foods on people who consume them and on their crops have generated enormous controversy. In this light Peru has taken an important step to protect their local food producers, establishing a moratorium on income and production of genetically modified organisms. This law, which was approved on November 4, was published on December 9 in the Official Gazette.
The president of Peru, Ollanta Humala said that it came to this decision after hearing "the cries of agricultural organizations and civil society to take this important step in the defense of our biodiversity."
Living modified organisms (LMOs) for research are excluded from the norm, including those used as pharmaceuticals and veterinary as governed by specific rules.
Also the LMO or its derivatives for food imported for direct human and animal, or for processing, said the rule would fall in this first group of processed foods such as dairy meal, which have been manufactured using GMOs.
Congressman Jaime Delgado, who was the driver of the rule, said in a statement that the law establishes the moratorium in response to the need to avoid irreparable damage to the country's biodiversity and to achieve a prior environmental land.
The National Convention of Peruvian Agriculture (Conveagro) also welcomed the enactment of the law and that Humala has taken the decision "without yielding to pressure from powerful groups." In a statement, Humala said he "heard the cries of agricultural organizations and civil society to take this important step in the defense of our biodiversity."
The president of Conveagro, Lucila Quintana, said: "Now we have to tap the potential of Peru's diverse agriculture, food and tourism, as part of a national biosafety work and ensure agricultural production to achieve food security. "Earlier this year, the administration of the outgoing Peruvian President slipped in a... more
The water supplied by the glaciers of the Cordillera Blanca, vital to a huge region of northwest Peru, is decreasing 20 years sooner than expected, according to a new study.
Water flows from the region's melting glaciers have already peaked and are in decline, Michel Baraer, a glaciologist at Canada's McGill University, told Tierramérica. This is happening 20 to 30 years earlier than forecasted.
"Our study reveals that the glaciers feeding the Río Santa watershed are now too small to maintain past water flows. There will be less water, as much as 30 percent less during the dry season," said Baraer, lead author of the study "Glacier Recession and Water Resources in Peru’s Cordillera Blanca", published Dec. 22 in the Journal of Glaciology.
When glaciers begin to shrink in size, they generate "a transitory increase in runoff as they lose mass," the study notes.
However, Baraer explained, the water flowing from a glacier eventually hits a plateau and from this point onwards there is a decrease in the discharge of melt water. "The decline is permanent. There is no going back."
Part of the South American Andes Mountain chain, the Cordillera Blanca is a series of snow-covered peaks running north to south, parallel to the Cordillera Negra, located further west. Between the two ranges lies the Callejón de Huaylas, through which the Río Santa runs, eventually emptying into the Pacific Ocean.
The tropical glaciers of the Andes Mountains are in rapid decline, losing 30 to 50 percent of their ice in the last 30 years, according to French Institute for Research and Development (IRD).
Most of the decline has been since 1976, IRD reported, due to rising temperatures in the region as a result of climate change. In Bolivia, the Chacaltaya glacier disappeared in 2009.
Even in the colder regions of the Andes glaciers are in full retreat. Chile's Center for Scientific Studies reported this month that the Jorge Montt Glacier in the vast Patagonian Ice Fields receded one entire km in just one year. Historically glacial retreat is extremely slow: one or two km per 100 years.
Melting glaciers around the world present some of the strongest evidence that global climate change is underway, said Lonnie Thompson of Ohio State University, the world's foremost glaciologist.
Thompson warns that without sharp reductions in the use of fossil fuels, the impacts of climate change could come faster and beyond what humanity can adapt to.
Warmer temperatures not only melt ice but also have major effects on snowfall.
As cool seasons become warmer and snow turns to rain, the amount and duration of snow packs decrease and the permanent snow line moves upslope, according to the Inter-American Institute for Global Change Research (IAI), an intergovernmental science organization based in São José dos Campos, Brazil.
These changes have significant effects on the seasonality of stream flows, increasing winter flow rates while the availability of water during the summer declines when water in streams and rivers comes mainly from snow and ice melt.
In many High Andean tropical and subtropical valleys, spring and summer snow and glacier melt are critical for crops, livestock and human consumption. Several major Andean cities rely heavily on glacier and snow melt for their water supply, such as La Paz and Lima, with demand increasingly outstripping the supply, according to a 2010 IAI communiqué.
The Cordillera Blanca has the most glaciers of any tropical mountain range in the world. In the 1930s glaciers covered up to 850 sq km of the region and now they cover less than 600 sq km, reports Baraer and the eight other study authors from McGill University, Ohio State University, the University of California, the IRD and the glaciology unit of the Peruvian National Water Authority.
Most of the melt water from these glaciers drains into the Río Santa watershed. The researchers compared detailed water flow measurements from the 1950s to water flows in recent years, and determined that of the nine sub-watersheds of the Río Santa, seven have passed their peak water flow and are in decline, and almost all of the decline is during the dry summer months.
Changes in precipitation and the effects of La Niña and El Niño were also assessed and were not responsible for the declines, Baraer said.
Until now it was widely believed that such declines would take place 20 to 30 years from now, allowing time to adapt to a future with less water. "Those years don't exist," said Baraer.
More at the linkThe water supplied by the glaciers of the Cordillera Blanca, vital to a huge region of... more
"The presence of Talisman here is causing divisions between those who have accepted the company and those who won't... We are on the verge of genocide."
In Achuar territory in the remote Peruvian Amazon, an already tense situation has taken a turn for the worse over recent months. According to the urgent testimony of two Catholic priests, who have been living in the region for more than 60 years combined, Canadian-based oil company Talisman Energy is fomenting severe divisions between indigenous communities, heightening the risk of imminent bloodshed between neighboring families.
Talisman is drilling exploratory oil wells in Oil Block 64 in a remote area of the Peruvian Amazon near the Ecuador border. The oil block overlaps the territory of the Achuar people, and wells are being drilled in the heart of Achuar ancestral territory, in the middle of critical hunting and fishing grounds in a flooded wetlands ecosystem that drains into Lake Rimachi, the largest lake in the Peruvian Amazon, and the Pastaza River Wetland Complex, a site acknowledged under the Ramsar Convention as one of the most productive aquatic ecosystems in the Amazon rainforest.
Achuar leader Peas Peas Ayui, President of the National Achuar Federation of Peru (FENAP) has just returned from Calgary, Canada where he met with Talisman CEO John Manzoni to demand that the company respect the Achuar people, withdraw from their territory and cease insistent attempts to convince communities to sign agreements. The Achuar previously delivered the same message to Mr. Manzoni in 2008 and 2010, but despite the Achuar people's steadfast opposition to oil drilling, Talisman Energy continues its relentless search for oil, resorting to dangerous industry practices: divided and conquer.
Recent testimony from Padre Diego and Padre Bola highlights signs of oil company bribery, ecological disruption, threats of bloodshed between indigenous communities, and even the first cases of sexually transmitted diseases are part and parcel of a deteriorating situation along the Pastaza and Morona rivers, where Talisman is currently exploring for oil.
The Peruvian government first created Block 64 in 1995 during the Fujimori dictatorship without consultation or consent from the Achuar people who live there. The oil block and Talisman's operations span two river basins: the Pastaza and the Morona. The block directly affects Achuar territory; Shuar-Wampisa and Shapra people downriver on the Morona are also affected.
The Achuar were united and opposed to oil operations since the creation of the oil block and forced successive companies to leave, but since Talisman's arrival in the region in 2004, two new Achuar organizations representing a minority group of eight out of the 50 Achuar communities have broken off and signed agreements with Talisman. The Achuar accuse Talisman of ignoring communities who oppose their operations and creating divisions and conflict through offering high financial incentives to any community or family who signs up with the company.
The testimony from Father Diego underlines the seriousness of this situation, and calls attention to the spread of this conflict downriver in Shuar-Wampisa communities where a peaceful protest in September 2011 almost ended in bloodshed after a group of pro-Talisman Achuar confronted protestors with guns. This was almost an exact repeat of a similar incident in May 2009 when 300-400 Achuar marched in protest to a Talisman well and were confronted by armed pro-Talisman Achuar standing with the company. Talisman is subject to ongoing litigation in Peru over its involvement in provoking this dangerous conflict.
More at the link
Click on double bars to stop video if you wish."The presence of Talisman here is causing divisions between those who have... more
REPORTING FROM LIMA, PERU, AND BOGOTA, COLOMBIA -- With protests mounting against a proposed gold mine in northern Peru, local officials Friday called on President Ollanta Humala to meet with the project’s opponents about its potential social and environmental effects.
Gregorio Santos, the president of the Cajamarca region, said Humala should meet with locals concerned that the proposed Conga mine threatens the area’s water supply and "could destroy the entire ecosystem."
Last week, Santos told reporters he thought that Humala's support for the mine showed he was under pressure from "transnational capitalism."
On Thursday, an estimated 10,000 residents marched to protest the project, which would be operated by Colorado-based Newmont Mining. (The company also runs the Yanacocha open-pit gold mine 20 miles to the north.) Roads have been blockaded and some Cajamarca-area schools and businesses closed in protest.
http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/world_now/2011/11/peru-gold-mine-protests.htmlREPORTING FROM LIMA, PERU, AND BOGOTA, COLOMBIA -- With protests mounting against a... more
In 2009, in diplomatic cables later made public by wikileaks, the US identified the "key countries" it had in its sights for GMOs, and Peru was on the list.
Then, earlier this year, the administration of the outgoing Peruvian President slipped in a decree that opened the door for GM foods and seeds. But the subsequent outcry forced not only the resignation of the Agriculture Minister who'd introduced the decree but also a 10-year ban on GMOs.
Now, because that ban wasn't signed into law by the outgoing Administration, the new Peruvian Congress has overwhelmingly approved the ban once again. And the new President is a known opponent of GMOs.
Peru’s Congress approves 10-year GMO ban
AGENCE FRANCE PRESSE, November 5 2011
LIMA – Peru’s Congress announced Friday it overwhelmingly approved a 10-year moratorium on imports of genetically modified organisms in order to safeguard the country’s biodiversity.
The measure bars GMOs - including seeds, livestock, and fish - from being imported for cultivation or to be raised locally.
Exceptions include the use of GMO products for research purposes in a closed environment, but those will be closely monitored, the legislature’s official news service said.
The bill, approved late Thursday, now goes to President Ollanta Humala to be signed into law. Humala, who has been in power since late July, has repeatedly said he opposes GM programs.
According to the Agriculture Ministry, Peru is one of the world’s leading exporters of organic food, including coffee and cocoa, with $3 billion a year in revenues and 40,000 certified producers.
Congress approved a similar 10-year moratorium in June, but outgoing president Alan Garcia, who was seen as being favorable to GM, did not ratify the ban.
There was friction over GM in the previous government’s ministries of agriculture and environment.
The head of Peru’s Consumer Agency, Jaime Delgado, said the moratorium is long enough to learn from scientific studies that will emerge on the effects of GMO products.
The country’s leading group representing farmers and ranchers, the National Agrarian Convention, said that by this measure Peru “defends its biodiversity, its agriculture, its gastronomy and its health.”In 2009, in diplomatic cables later made public by wikileaks, the US identified the... more
CNN BREAKING NEWS...
6.9 magnitude earthquake hits Peru
October 28th, 2011
03:15 PM ET
A 6.9-magnitude earthquake struck Peru on Friday, some 32 miles south of Ica, the U.S. Geological Survey reported.
Please add updates - thanks!CNN BREAKING NEWS...
6.9 magnitude earthquake hits Peru
October 28th, 2011... more