Oh Chile, a long petal
of sea and wine and snow,
Oh when and when
I will meet you again,
You will wind your ribbon
made up of white and black foam around my waist,
and I will unleash my poetry
upon your land.
And it was just like that, between the Andes mountain range and the infinite expanse of the Pacific Ocean, that a narrow strip of land arose and it contained all the elements that had been used to create the rest of the world.
The Nature Conservancy (TNC) was founded in 1951 and, at present, is impacting conservation in 72 countries, with one mission to achieve: preserving the land and waters from which all life depends.
Chile is a narrow strip of land located between two monumental limits of the Andes and the Pacific Ocean. As seen by the eyes of Tibor Mende, a Hungarian thinker and essay writer, our country has been linked with a group of divergent sceneries, from the desert in the north, passing through the Mediterranean landscape in the center and the luxuriant greenery of the forests in the south, finishing with the eternal ice in the extreme south of the country. In each one, nature exuberantly explodes in every corner of our country. No wonder we got to be the land of poets, with two Nobel Prize winners to our credit.
For a long time our natural limits, the desert, the mountains, the sea and the ice, have been an important contribution to the conservation of Chile. The isle-like character of Chile means that almost 25 % of the species existing here are endemic, putting us in an important place for the conservation of biodiversity on a global scale. It is no wonder then that 40 % of our territory is considered by the environmental world to be a hotspot.
In our future, however, we must be prepared for some important challenges. Chile is growing and the demands to continue along this road to development are putting an enormous pressure on our natural resources. We are aspiring to reaching growth indices similar to those of developed nations, in terms of life quality and the improvement of inequalities. We recently became an OECD member (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development) but we know, and social movements confirm it, that this situation forces us to increase our care of our nature for future generations.
The Nature Conservancy is facing 4 challenges in Chile:
• Conservation of Critical Lands
• Water Security
• Protection of the Coast and the Oceans
• Mitigation of climate change
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In line with its water security work in Chile, The Nature Conservancy –together with Chile’s Catholic University Global Change Center and HSBC Bank—hosted August 23, 2016 a seminar to discuss the role that green infrastructure can play in climate change adaptation.
The Nature Conservancy is investing in green infrastructure to protect the habitats of the Maipo watershed in central Chile.
The Ministry of the Environment, municipalities and universities participated together.