The Sustainable Amazonian Landscapes Project (SAL), from the Decision and Policy Analysis (DAPA) Research Area (DAPA) at CIAT, which brings together scientists from other research areas such as Soils and Landscapes for Sustainability and the Forages research team, started the new year with its third annual meeting to follow up on activities carried out in 2016 and prepare work plans for 2017.
This is a project that provides national environmental authorities and farmers in Colombia and Peru with scientific evidence about the role that more sustainable land management alternatives can play in enhancing their capacity to mitigate and adapt to climate change, while improving ecosystem services and socio-economic benefits for farmers.
Professionals from partnering institutions on this project, such as the Center for Research in Sustainable Agricultural Production Systems (CIPAV, its Spanish acronym), the Amazon Scientific Research Institute (SINCHI, its Spanish initials), the University of the Amazon(UNIAMAZ), the Peruvian Amazon Research Institute (IIAP), La Molina National Agrarian University (UNALM), and the Postdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK), visited CIAT to jointly follow up and discuss activities carried out since the second annual meeting that took place in February 2016, and to create a methodological plan of action for 2017.
During their stay at CIAT, participants worked on the environmental and socio-economic baseline of deforested landscapes, the construction of sustainability indicators to assess land management alternatives, the estimation of possible impacts of climate change on crops, the participatory design and implementation of sustainable land-use alternatives, the identification of transition strategies towards sustainable development, and the local validation of tools to monitor changes in land cover.
The identification and study of sustainable production systems is one of the main pillars for conservation and the scientific and technological development of the region. For the Sustainable Amazonian Landscapes (SAL) project it is important to build on the knowledge already generated by academia and researchers.
Juan Carlos Suárez Salazar
Professor at the University of the Amazon (UNIAMAZ)
Similarly, Antonio Solarte, Coordinator of the Environmental Services Area at CIPAV, stated that “such meetings are spaces to generate high-quality knowledge for the Amazonian context and to develop production systems that are sustainable, economically profitable, environmentally friendly, and socially fair.”
This meeting provided an opportunity to discuss the results of the different work packages with an interdisciplinary team and to define a work plan to achieve project goals that require a comprehensive vision, such as the construction of climate change cost-adaptation curves for the different management alternatives to be used as a sustainability indicator. The SAL project is in a moment of transition, moving on from theory to practice, where sustainable management schemes have been prepared with producers, as well as the conceptual and methodological framework to measure its social, economic, and environmental sustainability.
Sustainable Amazonian Landscapes Project Leader, CIAT
It is important to mention that the project will be extended to 2018 and those who are taking part in it intend to apply for a new phase that allows researchers to assess changes in sustainability and adaptation capability resulting from the implementation of best practices in production systems. “We have invested considerably in establishing a good baseline to measure the mid- and long-term impacts of this and similar projects being implemented in our study sites in Caquetá, Colombia, and Yurimagua, Peru,” Marcela concluded.
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We thank all our partners and the donor for allowing the SAL project to become a reality!