Words by Smiley Team
Colombian president, Gustavo Petro, is set to take office in August 2022 – and he is determined to put a stop to deforestation in the Amazon rainforest once and for all.
Deforestation is at a record high in the Amazonian rainforest, which makes up almost 40% of Colombia.
In 2021, the Amazon lost 98,000 hectares (around 240,000 acres) to deforestation, and 9,000 hectares (around 22,000 acres) to fire, making 2021 the fourth worst year on record for deforestation.
This is according to Monitoring of the Andean Amazon Project (MAAP), which itself is an initiative organised by the Amazon Conservation Association, a nonprofit dedicated to protecting the Amazon rainforest.
“From Colombia, we will give humanity a reward, a remedy, a solution: not to burn the Amazon rainforest anymore, to recover it to its natural frontier, to give humanity the possibility of life on this planet," said Gustavo during his campaign.
Historically, presidential campaigns in Colombia do not focus on the Amazon as it’s one of the less populated areas in the country, so it is even more impressive that Gustavo focused on it.
Sometimes the prospect of climate change may seem bleak, but with people like Gustavo championing change from the top down, the future looks a lot more hopeful.
DONATE: You can help the Amazon Conservation Association by donating on their website.
SUPPORT: Become a ‘Wild Keeper’ and give regularly to the Amazon Conservation Association and get perks and rewards, like information on conservation and being entered into giveaways of artisan crafts made by indigenous peoples.
GET INVOLVED: Contact your local MP and demand climate action now, including protection of the Amazon rainforest.