Partnering to Protect Cusco’s Biodiversity
April 21, 2014
Earlier this year, ACCA (ACA’s Peruvian sister organization) signed a formal cooperative agreement with Cusco’s regional government to support the creation of two new regional protected areas, Urusayhua-Koshireni and Ausangate. As part of this partnership, ACCA will also support the regional government in the management of the Choquequirao Regional Conservation Area, a span of forest which includes ancient Incan ruins just 30 miles from Machu Picchu.
In Peru’s park system, a regional protected area is the equivalent of a U.S. state park. Urusayhua-Koshireni and Ausangate span over 1.5 million acres; Choquequirao, Cusco’s first regional conservation area, stands at 256,530 acres. ACCA hopes to have Urusayhua-Koshireni and Ausangate officially declared as regional protected areas by 2015. Once officially declared, this partnership will offer additional protection for close to 2 million acres of forested and culturally significant land.
Daniela Pogliani, ACCA’s Executive Director, and Efraín Samochuallpa Solis, Cusco’s Regional Manager of Natural Resources and Environmental Management, signed the agreement February 20 on behalf of their respective institutions. The partnership took effect the same day.
Over the coming months and years, ACCA will assist Cusco in implementing its plan for Choquequirao and provide additional support for hiring staff, equipping rangers, developing a research plan, and seeking long-term financing for the area.
Who Lives in These Protected Areas?
Protected areas give wildlife the space they to need to thrive. Here are just a few of the majestic species that the partnership between ACCA and the Cusco regional government—to create these protected areas—will help:
- Spectacled bears (Choquequirao and Urusayhua-Koshireni)
- Condors (Ausangate)
- Vicuñas (Ausangate)
- Scarlet macaws (Urusayhua-Koshireni)
- South American river otters (Urusayhua-Koshireni)
- Pumas (Urusayhua-Koshireni)
- And so much more!