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Páramo research by the Humboldt Institute receives award for scientific excellence

(4 September 2013)

Great news for our friends at the Humboldt Institute and for the páramos of Colombia! For their research "contributions to strategic conservation of the páramos: identification of the lower limits at scale 1:100.000", the Fundación Alejandro Angel Escobar (FAAE) awarded the Humboldt Institute the 2013 Science award, in the category of environment and sustainable development. It is the most important scientific award given in Colombia. The páramo research team of the Institute really deserves this prize because in the midst of all the political attention on this sensitive topic, they managed to keep calm and implemented a project with scientific rigor. I am proud that last year I could contribute to this research, together with Antoine Cleef and David Rivera, as scientific advisers.

Páramo Communities

(22 July 2013)

Currently, I am working on a great project with my old friends at IUCN. It is a project on climate change adaptation by páramo communities in Colombia, Ecuador and Peru (read project description - Spanish). My role in the project is to make an inventory of the state of knowledge and progress of research on the impact of climate change on the páramo, including biological, geographical and socio-cultural aspects. We hope that in October of this year we can present the report and until then, I am sure to enjoy working on this interesting task with wonderful partner organizations (Ecociencia, The Mountain Institute, Tropenbos and the Alexander von Humboldt Institute).

World Heritage evaluations

(April 2013)

During the first months of 2013, I had the privilege of evaluating two UNESCO World Heritage sites. The IUCN is the organization that gives technical advice to UNESCO on natural World Heritage sites and therefore, IUCN invited me to do these evaluations on its behalf. I visited the Cordillera de Talamanca binational site (Costa Rica and Panamá) and the Cerrado National Parks (Chapada dos Veadeiros and Emas) in Brazil. These are very interesting missions because you are to visit the beautiful natural areas on the planet. On the other side, when such a mission is organized, this implies that there is some level of threat and therefore, the evaluation should analyse very carefully the state of conservation and the opinions of the different stakeholders. On both sites, we made some strong recommendation that were considered at the UNESCO World Heritage Committee meeting in Cambodia (June).