Pantanal Observatory

History

The Pantanal Observatory represents the union of civil society organizations, acting in favor of socio-environmental issues in the Upper Paraguay River Basin in Bolivia, Brazil, and Paraguay.

In 2015, the first meeting to build this network happened, as part of an IUCN initiative to create a participatory space for civil society organizations. They consider the conservation and the sustainable use of Pantanal resources should be a common concern for society, governments, and the private sector. The conservation of the entire Upper Paraguay Basin depends on the survival and integrity of this biome, since events, natural or otherwise, that occur in the upper parts of the river basin determine the environmental balance and ecological processes of the Pantanal. In 2017, 18 members joined in and prepared a strategic plan for the performance of this organization. Currently, there are 27 members, operating in Bolivia, Brazil, and Paraguay.

At the Pantanal Observatory, there are efforts and administrative cooperation combined for the capture and availability of information that helps to promote respect for socio-biodiversity in the region.  This way, this organization aims to promote synergies between institutions and knowledge areas, providing scientific information and traditional knowledge to society, promoting training at various levels and providing the basis for processes of influence in decision making and public policies.

Mission

To catalyze and spread information from the Pantanal in a transformative way, which also promotes socio-environmental public policies.

Vision

The Pantanal Observatory acts as a network that integrates information related to the Pantanal biome and influences public policies for its use, conservation, and cultural valorization for sustainable development.

Pantanal Law

The Federal Constitution of 1988 indicates that specific legislation to ensure protection and regulate economic activities in the Pantanal biome should exist. Three decades later, this important world wetland area continues to lack its legal scope. In 2011, then-Senator Blairo Maggi (PR/MT) filed Bill No. 750, which focused on the Management and Protection Policy for the Pantanal biome. The project is known as the Law of the Pantanal.  In 2017, Congressman Alessandro Molon filed Bill No. 9,950 on the conservation and sustainable use of the Pantanal Biome. Both projects had been shelved at the beginning of 2011, however, in February, Bill No. 9,950 restarted the process of approval, which is still in progress.

Pantanal Observatory helps to assist in the elaboration of a law that truly contributes to the development of the region based on the principles of sustainability. On September 26, 2018, this group promoted a seminar in the city of Campo Grande, MS, where the participants debated and made new propositions to create a law to protect the Pantanal and, at the same time, to create mechanisms that reward communities and rural producers that contribute to the conservation and promotion of sustainable development. Researchers, jurists, community members, fishermen, tourism representatives, social movements, and environmental NGOs attended the event, which held presentations on weaknesses, potentials, vulnerabilities, and opportunities in the region.

The organizations of the Pantanal Observatory discussed concrete proposals for the project, seeking to help the Legislative Branch approve a law that considers the different social realities and landscape diversity of one of the most important biomes in the world. These contributions led to a publication launched in November 2018. In April 2019,  the writer of the bill No. 9,950 currently in progress in the House of Representatives, in a formal sitting in honor of the Day of the Wet Areas, received this publication, so that the new bill could take into consideration all contributions of the Pantanal Observatory.

Interactive Map

The Pantanal Observatory’s interactive map provides a set of information for understanding the geographic space of the Pantanal.

The Pantanal

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