Places We Protect


PWP bolivia birds


Noel Kempff Mercado National Park: where the Amazon rainforest meets dry Chiquitano forests.

With 21,000-foot peaks, Amazonian jungles, seasonally flooded wetlands, rare dry forests and desert-like expanses, not to mention abundant natural resources, Bolivia is a stunning mosaic of high

    • more than 9 million people, a majority of whom are of indigenous origen;

    • more than 1,350 species of birds, including harpy eagles and tiger herons;

    • more than 320 species of mammals, including jaguars and spider monkeys;

    • 11,000 species of plants, including hundreds of orchid species.

As rich as Bolivia is in terms of biodiversity, culture and natural resources, economic development in the country has lagged behind. That’s why the Conservancy has been working in Bolivia since 1986, supporting the Bolivian government to implement projects specifically designed to conserve the country’s wild beauty, manage its natural resources, and promote socioeconomic development all at the same time. The Conservancy’s conservation projects in Bolivia include:

BOLFOR II Sustainable Forestry Management Project
In 2003, the Conservancy, the Bolivian government and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) together launched the BOLFOR II sustainable forestry management project to protect both dry and tropical lowland Bolivian forests and give communities a way to earn sustainable and profitable incomes at the same time.

Noel Kempff Climate Action Project
By terminating logging rights on 1.6 million acres of lands and making them part of neighboring Noel Kempff Mercado National Park, the Conservancy is supporting the Bolivian government in preventing the release of 5.8 million metric tons of carbon into the atmosphere over the next 30 years through the Noel Kempff Climate Action Project. This is a significant step forward in the fight against global climate change and in addition to helping protect the park’s rich forests, local communities are receiving training in alternative, sustainable livlihoods.

Public Protected Areas
The Conservancy is helping strengthen Bolivia’s national system of protected areas, including indigenous, municipal, departmental, and national protected areas.

Valuing the services nature provides
The Conservancy is supporting various institutions in the Department of Santa Cruz to study water valuation and explore compensation mechanisms that could help protect water resources from Amboró National Park, which supplies the city of Santa Cruz and its 1.5 million inhabitants.

Much of the Nature Conservancy’s history of conservation success in Bolivia was achieved through a joint effort with USAID, called Parks-in-Peril.

Amboró and Carrasco National Parks: working with the Bolivian government and local partners through the Parks-in-Peril project, the Conservancy helped consolidate the protection of 3 million
acres of tropical forests.

Tariquía National Park: just a “park on paper”, legally decreed but not effectively protected before
the Parks-in-Peril project, the Conservancy was able to fortify protection of the 610,000-acre area—
home to hundreds of threatened and endangered species like the Andean spectacled bear.

Eduardo Avaroa National Park: as Bolivia’s most-visited national park, Eduardo Avaroa needed to find ways to better manage the seasonal influx of tourists. We were able to help the park get the infrastructure and management capacity necessary to better protect biodiversity.

Sama Cordillera Biological Reserve: in southern Bolivia near the Argentine border, the
Conservancy helped promote watershed protection and sustainable water management.