Effective tropical montane forest governance? Private (and Community) Conservation Areas in the Peruvian Andes

Authors: Aaron Groth*, University of Texas - Austin
Topics: Mountain Environments, Natural Resources, Human-Environment Geography
Keywords: Andes, tropical Andean forests, forest governance, protected areas, community property regimes
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/13/2018
Start / End Time: 1:20 PM / 3:00 PM
Room: Regent, Marriott, River Tower Elevators, 4th Floor
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


State and non-state institutions, individuals, and communities influence the conservation of tropical Andean forests. These forests harbor biodiversity, and provide tangible and intangible ecosystem services to local populations. While some Andean forests are protected within national systems of protected areas, communities and individuals manage and use forest resources. In the case of Peru, the Environment Ministry and National Protected Areas Service (SERNANP) recognize Areas of Private (and Community) Conservation (ACPs). Non-governmental organizations play a key role in the proliferation of ACPs under community property regimes. In the case of Amazonas, Peru, the region has 15 ACPs: 6 under private management and 9 under community management. In the case of Apurimac, Peru, the region has no ACPs. This paper identifies key actors and institutions involved in the creation of ACPs of Amazonas, and contrasts this to the efforts of actors and institutions involved in conservation of Andean forests in Apurimac. During 2015, 2016, and 2017, I conducted eleven months of field research: observation of community and institutional meetings, semi-structured interviews with actors influencing forest conservation and creation of ACPs, and I facilitated workshops with local communities. This paper reveals different strategies of conservation on the part of local actors, and the importance of legal and technical expertise and financial investment during the establishment of ACPs under community property regimes. Communities with or without ACPs may have internal agreements to protect natural resources, including forests, but may lack mechanisms of effective monitoring and control.

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