The Size of Herefordshire has long been concentrating on aiding the indigenous people who live in the great Amazn rainforest in their fight to protect their lands. In particular, we have been helping the Wampi people and the Awajun people of the forest in north eastern Peru. Indigenous people own a quarter of the world's land and evidence shows that they are the best protectors of the land.
So it was with particular pleasure that we read that at the end of August indigenous leaders from Peru, Bolivia, Brazil, Columbia, Ecuador, French Guiana, Suriname and Venezuela met in Bogata and called for the consolidation of "the biggest environmental and cultural corridor in the world to unite protected areas with indigenous territories, recover degraded areas and promote the sustainable use of the forest." Forest of course means that extraordinary Amazon rainforest of 200 million hectares which runs from the Andes to the Atlantic.
The indigenous leaders called on governments of the region to "weave alliances and commitments to promote, protect and make visible the Andes-Amazon-Atlantic Corridor, its biodiversity, its cultures and the sacredness of its territory,"
One indigenous leader, Tuntiak Katan, put it well; "For us the Amazon basin is sacred. Some say it's the lungs of the world. For us it is the heart of the world and in this heart we find an immense concentration of biodiversity and cultural diversity. Yet it's here that they're pushing ahead with more extractive and industrial activities."
In short, the forest is up against voracious late-form capitalism, in which the only bottom line is the return to shareholders.
The summit was financed by small donations from Avaaz subscribers.