Unesco Green Citizens

Agrobiodiversity in the lower Rio Negro

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Project begin: 10/08/2005

This award-winning project promotes biodiversity and local agriculture in Brazil’s Lower Rio Negro region. By sharing local knowledge, communities live in harmony with the Amazon rainforest, while improving their income.

Leading organisation: IPÊ - Instituto de Pesquisas Ecológicas (Ecological Research Institute)
The country where the team is based: Brazil
Theme: Biodiversity, Education for Sustainable Development, Local and Indigenous Knowledge
Sub-themes: Agriculture, Climate change, Cultural diversity, Environment, Food and food security, Gender equality and women's empowerment, Knowledge sharing, Natural resource management, Poverty and inequality reduction
Selection: 2020/2021
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Project needs
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Brazil’s Rio Negro region is threatened by deforestation and less diverse agricultural practices. In 2005, a group of citizens and researchers – Mariana Gama Semeghini, Márcio Arthur Oliverira de Menezes, Leonardo Pereira Kurihara and Thiago Mota Cardoso – decided to do something about it.

Supporting local ecosystems and entrepreneurs

So, a citizen-led agrobiodiversity project was born with the aim of developing and consolidating agroecological production systems and agrobiodiversity products. How? Through participatory ethnoecological research, training and exchanging experiences. This in turn adds value to local knowledge, generates income, promotes entrepreneurship and strengthens local organisations

The project has been awarded numerous prizes including Best Practices in Local Management Award – Caixa Econômica Federal (2013). So far, 150 farming families have benefited from training and exchanged experiences. 20 areas based on agroforestry systems with more than 20 species have been established.

The project continues to make a positive impact on indigenous and riverine families, improving product quality, increasing household income and reinforcing agroecological systems.

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