Monitoring is important, documenting is essential

IUCN and CPI-Acre promote training on environmental monitoring platforms

On October 19th and 20th, 2022, the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN), in alliance with the Acre Pro-Indian Commission (CPI-Acre), carried out training on technological platforms linked to community monitoring and territorial governance.

The training took place at the Federal University of Acre (UFAC) Convention Center and was attended by 43 people. The diverse audience was made up of monitors, riverside people from the Amazon 2.0 project, indigenous agroforestry agents and technicians from government institutions and civil society.

Aldalúcia Carvalho, strategic consultant for the A2.0 project in Brazil, explained that the main goal of the event was to provide a training space for local technicians from institutions linked to territorial governance in Natural Conservation Units in Acre, in addition to stimulating an environment for dialogue and exchange of experiences between the surveillance and territorial protection initiatives carried out in that State by a network of partners.

A mixed schedule

Sonaira Souza da Silva, a researcher at the Laboratory of Geoprocessing Applied to the Environment at the Federal University of Acre, started the activities talking about land cover patterns in the State of Acre, in particular the patterns of fire use and the dynamics of deforestation and forest fires. The master class was given by the geographer and consultant for the Amazônia 2.0 project, Silvia Villacis, whose central axis was the Geovisor, an A2.0 regional platform that allows the dynamic visualization of geospatial information on various topics, such as: project work, monitored areas, biodiversity monitoring, climate, land use, forest governance, among others.

Other community monitoring and territorial protection initiatives were also present in Acre with the use of technological tools:

  • Flávia Dinah, Administrator of Chandless State Park, shared the experience of Acre's Secretary of State for the Environment and Indigenous Policies (SEMAPI-AC) on community monitoring actions in Chandless Park;
  • Frank Silva, Technical Advisor for the Geoprocessing Sector at CPI-Acre, along with the monitors for protection and surveillance of indigenous lands Nawa, Alto Rio Purus, Katukina Kaxinawa and Mamoadate, spoke about the experience of protection and territorial surveillance in indigenous lands;
  • Luiz Henrique Medeiros Borges, Project Assistant at SOS Amazônia, spoke about the initiative for territorial protection and surveillance in Extractive Reserves;
  • Bruno Coutinho, Director of Knowledge Management at International Conservation, spoke about territorial monitoring in the Rio Gregório and Kampa do Rio Amônia Indigenous Lands.
  • Jarlene Gomes, researcher and project coordinator at the Amazon Research Institute (IPAM), also shared about the Indigenous Climate Alert monitoring platform.

Bruno Coutinho considers the workshop as an important first step towards deepening the relationships between institutions that work with the same theme in the same territory in a complementary way and in adjacent areas that deserve an integrated focus of territorial management.

Likewise, Luiz Henrique Borges highlighted that "the workshop helps to understand how each institution is working, which tool they are using and how this tool has been implemented with indigenous peoples and traditional communities" - he added - "the exchange of experiences was extremely enriching experience; being able to discover how to work together for an integrated territorial management, since the different initiatives shared their successes, the results and the main bottlenecks.

Positive conclusion

The workshop was very important, as it promoted exchanges, reflections and debates on tools and technological platforms linked to community monitoring and territorial governance.

Flávia Dinah says that the event was an important closing of the project, providing a balance of the actions developed, in addition to presenting other initiatives and tools that support the practical development of the monitoring work.

The conclusion of the program exceeded expectations, according to Branca Opazo Medina, Coordinator of the Geoprocessing Sector at CPI-Acre, who highlighted the discussions on the use and dissemination of information collected in the field by the monitors, knowing and disseminating the potential and limitations of the applications and platforms and looking at the particular realities of each territory.

The results of the event went far beyond training and the exchange of experiences, resulting in a positive agenda of references. One of the recommendations is a proposal to create the Independent Network for Territorial Monitoring of Acre, whose main focus is the promotion of a environment for exchange between institutions, with the objective of sharing data and advances with political incidence guidelines with SEMAPI, in addition to support and incentive to reestablish spaces for civil society participation in stimulating the implementation of the State System of Protected Natural Areas (SEANP).

As Branca Opazo Medina states, “this planted seed is promising, and could yield interesting results for the work of all those involved in the subject, such as periodic meetings and the elaboration of common agendas”.