How can I get involved in Peru
Questions and answers about buying a rainforest in Peru
What is the goal?
The primary aim of buying a rainforest is to set an example and to support the residents in their struggle for the preservation of their rainforest. Foreign investors are buying large areas of rainforest in the area in order to clear them and convert them into industrial plantations for cocoa and palm oil. We want to offer an alternative to the owners who would otherwise or would have to sell to the plantation operators.
How much land should be bought? Is it about buying as much land as possible?
The largest possible area is to be acquired and then converted into a private protected area. However, the size of the property is limited by what is available on site.
How much land has been bought?
As of December 2018, 37 lots had been purchased for a total of 462.4 hectares of land. In 2019, 12 rainforest plots with an area of 160 to 180 hectares will be added.
Where is land being bought?
The plots are located in northeastern Peru and belong to the Moteloy settlement, around 6 kilometers east of Tamshiyacu on the Amazon. The next major city is Iquitos, which is about 50 kilometers downstream. Lima is a two-hour flight away.
Who is selling the land?
The land is being sold by private, local landowners who usually live there themselves or who have lived there for a long time. A purchase is only possible and useful if the owner of the land has documents that unequivocally identify him as the owner.
Who owns the land after it is bought? Who is the buyer?
For the purchase, the residents of the settlement have teamed up with environmentalists and smallholders. Our partners from the German-Peruvian association "El Puente - die Brücke", who are on site, will manage the purchase and convert it into protected areas. The land does not belong to Rettet den Regenwald e.V. and no private person. It is not possible to resell the land.
How much does the land cost?
The purchase price per hectare is currently (as of November 2018) around 365 euros. This includes the costs for surveying, the notary and fees to the authorities so that the land is registered as a protected area.
What happens to the land after it is bought?
The country is declared a "private nature reserve". This is recognized by the state of Peru as a zone worthy of protection. For this, many applications have to be filled out and an inventory of the properties has to be carried out. After the border marking work had been completed, an inventory of the trees etc. was started. In the long term, the properties must be guarded and protected against attacks. Reforestation measures are planned in some places that have so far been used by the smallholders.
Does only original rainforest grow on the land that is bought?
The inhabitants of the rainforest live from the natural wealth of the jungle and small agricultural plots with cassava, pineapple and fruit trees near the village. This means that the majority of the purchased area actually grows primary forest that has not been destroyed. The residents only cultivate small crops for their daily needs and sell small quantities on the local market. In order to generate a permanent income, the smallholders are now being trained in biodynamic agriculture, small fields are being created and some of the products are being marketed together. Fish ponds are to follow soon so that a necessary source of protein is regularly available. For this purpose, only areas are used where there has been no forest for a long time.
When is the project finished?
There is no end in sight to the project, as the conversion of the plots into protection zones will take time. We also do not know how many properties are offered to us for sale and can be protected. The project with biodynamic agriculture will hopefully last for many years and then be taken over by another organization.
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