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YASUNÍ—Association for Tropical Biology and Conservation Resolution
Cover Letter and Resolution from the Association for Tropical Biology and Conservation (ATBC) Against The Planned New Petrobras Oil Road in Yasuní Park and World Biosphere Reserve in the Ecuadorian Amazon


WHEREAS, Yasuní National Park is the largest national park in Ecuador and is internationally recognized for its environmental and cultural importance, being formally designated as a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve in response to an official request by the Government of Ecuador in 1989; and

WHEREAS, Yasuní National Park protects a large expanse of the Napo Moist Forests of the Western Amazon, a region of extraordinary biodiversity for plants, insects, freshwater fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds, and bats that has been declared by international scientists to be among the world’s most biologically important areas; and

WHEREAS, Yasuní Park protects some of the last viable populations in Ecuador of the Giant Otter (Pteronura brasiliensis) , Amazonian Manatee (Trichechus inunguis), and the critically endangered Wattled Curassow (Crax globulosa); provides the only large protected area for the rare Golden-mantled Tamarin (Saguinus tripartitus); and harbors many other species of rare and threatened wildlife; and

WHEREAS, Yasuní National Park is of global conservation significance because it is one of the few “strict protected areas” (i.e. National Parks of IUCN Level II) in the far Western Amazon, and is predicted to have minimal weather changes from global warming, thereby having great importance as a biological refuge in the future; and

WHEREAS, current plans by the Brazilian oil corporation, Petrobras, to construct a 54-kilometer road from the Napo River into one of the most intact portions of Yasuní National Park to facilitate oil extraction in Block 31 are likely to have severe impacts on the conservation and scientific values of the park, and its wilderness character; and

WHEREAS, past research has demonstrated that previous road construction within Yasuní National Park and the surrounding region has had large detrimental environmental impacts on forest ecosystems, such as sharply increased local deforestation, illegal commercial hunting, and predatory logging; and

WHEREAS, Petrobras, known for being an environmentally responsible corporation in Brazil, should recognize that its proposed road project in Yasuní National Park in Ecuador would have serious, negative environmental consequences; and

WHEREAS, roadless petroleum-extraction activities in Ecuador’s Block 10 Oil Reserve have clearly demonstrated the feasibility of such methods, which could be used by Petrobras in Yasuní National Park with greatly reduced environmental impacts relative to those caused by a major new road;

THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Association for Tropical Biology and Conservation urges the Ecuadorian Government, in order to greatly minimize the environmental impacts of future petroleum-extraction activities, to revoke the license for the proposed Petrobras road into Block 31, to prohibit any future roadworks within Yasuní National Park and Biosphere Reserve, and to consult closely with appropriate scientific and cultural organizations that have expressed an interest in the conservation and development of the area, thereby helping to ensure the long-term viability of Yasuní National Park’s globally important tropical ecosystems and biodiversity.

Read the letter from the Association for Tropical Biology and Conservation
Read the letter from Scientists of the Smithsonian Institution
Read the letter from the Scientists Concerned for Yasuni National Park

Read the letter from Leading Scientists, including E.O. Wilson and Dr. Jane Goodall
E.O. Wilson Lecture and Slide Show in the U.S. Senate
Dr. Jane Goodall's Press Conference and Lecture in the U.S. Senate
Dr. Peter Raven's letter to the Senate endorsing the Act to Save America's Forests

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