More About Colombia
Colombia's indigenous peoples continue to face grave threats in the era of the country's new President Juan Manual Santos. The struggle to control Colombia's lucrative natural resources has helped spur the country's decades-long civil war and is a central consideration of U.S. foreign policy for the region. More
How the Goldman Prize Bolstered the U'wa Struggle for Territorial RightsFebruary 17, 2017
If UNESCO designated people as World Heritage sites, Berito Kuwaru'wa would be a leading candidate. On one hand, he personifies the beautiful and poetic U'wa view of the world, deeply connected to the original laws of nature. On the other, he is a unique and visionary human being, with an innate charisma through which he has bridged cultures and inspired global support for the U'wa struggle.
The U'wa consider themselves the guardians of their sacred ancestral homeland. In accordance with their natural laws, for centuries they have successfully defended their territory high in the Andean cloud forests.
While the political climate has dramatically changed in 2016, we remain ever-committed to advancing our work in defense of the Amazon, in support of indigenous peoples rights and territories, and in growing the global movement to keep fossil fuels in the ground and build a just transition to renewables.
At Amazon Watch we are extremely proud of the relationship of solidarity we have built with the U’wa, who continue to amaze and inspire us.
For the majority of Colombians, and for those who have worked on human rights in Colombia, the conflict that has killed hundreds of thousands and displaced millions can't end soon enough.
Tomorrow marks the end of a wrenching election season here in the U.S., one with barely a mention of the environment or climate change, and certainly no proposals for major policies to protect our environment and address climate change.
Failure to protect indigenous land rights in the Amazon region is undermining the safeguarding of forests and the reduction of emissionsOctober 19, 2016Climate News Network
“Not only is securing land tenure the right thing to do, it’s one of the world’s most cost-effective climate mitigation strategies”
Thank you to all our friends and supporters who joined us at our 20th Anniversary Gala on Wednesday in San Francisco, where we shared food, music, dancing, and inspiring words about our last 20 years and our vision for the years to come supporting indigenous peoples and protecting the Amazon.
We recently completed a 4-year strategic plan that builds on our work over the last 20 years to strategically tackle the Amazon's gravest threats. Considering that indigenous lands hold 80% of global biodiversity, it is no surprise that extractive industries want their resources. If left to them, the Amazon's Sacred Headwaters would become one big oil field, and the watersheds of the Brazilian Amazon would be destroyed by agribusiness and mega-dams. There is another way!
Peace is more than the silencing of guns, and that the peace accord will not address all sources of violence in the conflict. To that end, we share with you this guest blog from Bogota-based activists working with our partners of the U'wa Nation in Colombia, recounting the U'wa's recent struggle to recover their ancestral territory from oil drilling.