Forums for the Earth addressed current environmental challenges from the ecosocial transformation in harmony with forests

Learning to protect the ecosystemic and cultural value of the biodiversity of the temperate rainforests of southern America was the premise that framed the second version of Forums for Earth 2023. This binational meeting was held at the Pucón Campus of the UFRO and brought together various local organizations, national and regional institutions, students and academics with the purpose of exploring the gaps and opportunities linked to the protection of South American temperate rainforests in Chile and Argentina. Through various perspectives, ecosocial regeneration, the protection of biocultural heritage and the restoration of the human-nature bond were delved into.

The meeting had a participatory and experiential approach to highlight the importance of knowing and understanding ecosystems from different experiences, including activities related to art, science and ancestral knowledge. Experts, scientists, academics, members of indigenous communities and representatives of international entities shared their knowledge and experiences through conferences, panels, laboratories, meditation and music. Each day of the Forums was mediated by three thematic axes; biodiverse forests, forests as water-providing ecosystems and as forests as a natural climate solution.

One of the guests at the meeting was Ronald Sistek, organizational advisor of our foundation and director of the Kawoq Foundation, who was in charge of the conference “Emerging Ecosocial Transformation. From the local to the global”, where he delved into the different levels of social perception in nature: “there is a collective need to look at the role of the human being, in his participation in a collective experience, a biosphere, a solar system and a universe,” he noted.

On the other hand, our conservation director, Amerindia Jaramillo, was invited as a moderator to the panel entitled Forests custodians and providers of water, which addressed the restoration and conservation of native forests for the provision of water at the scale of hydrographic basins, with special focus on wetlands and riparian forests, as well as the importance of citizen participation and activism in relation to the conservation of water-providing ecosystems. Loreto Lagos, member of Fundación Raíces de Pucón, Isabel Rojas, Ph.D. participated in the conversation. Forestry and professor at the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile, Yerko Castillo, Mg. in water resources from the Center for Transdisciplinary Studies of the Austral University of Chile and Ricardo González, PhD in forestry sciences, economist in natural resources and environment from UFRO. Our conservation director highlighted that for the foundation it is very relevant to promote the generation of spaces for dialogue, meeting and collaboration around the conservation and restoration of mountain forest ecosystems, highlighting the multiple values that these ecosystems possess, as providers of water. , biodiversity habitats and spaces that invite reflection, inspiration and the development of new learning.

The meeting also included a space for the development of applied work with the realization of different thematic Innovation Laboratories. In this instance, attendees put into practice learning and experiences related to education, pedagogy, sustainable tourism and forest regeneration. From Fundación Mar Adentro, our Pehuén Forest conservation project coordinator, Sebastián Carrasco, and the learning project coordinator, María Jesús Olivos, were part of the participants in the Alliance for New Forests and Education and Pedagogy in Nature laboratories.

The co-design of the Innovation Laboratories was conceived as an opportunity for regeneration, with a focus on the restoration of social ties, understanding collaboration as an effective tool in conservation. In the words of Antonia Calcagni, facilitator of the forest regeneration laboratory, “it was a space to generate a social field of trust, respect and collaboration. To understand that regeneration has to do with care for life and for ourselves.”

One of the attendees at the meeting, Hernán Verscheure, director of CODEFF and FSC Chile, valued the transformative perspective of the experience. “Understand that the action of protecting, regenerating and restoring must start with work on our inner being, that is, it starts from the soul of each one, from the heart and that this is expressed in the generation of bonds with our peers, with whom we “We share interests and with those who do not, in order to influence and facilitate collective work, in line with the nature of this meeting.”

About Cuidemos Paraísos Foundation

This event was organized by the Cuidemos Paraísos Foundation, with the support of the Universidad Austral de Chile, the Universidad de Magallanes, the Universidad de la Frontera and the collaboration of Fundación Panqui Folletti, Spring Prize, Lush and Fundación Mar Adentro. The first edition, held in 2021, focused on proposing a regional vision of the rainforests of southern Chile and Argentina as biological corridors that allow the conservation of socioecosystems in the south of the world.

Next year, the organizers of this meeting will seek to expand the initiative globally, inviting five distribution zones of cold forests in the world, located on the Chile – Argentina, Canada – United States, Russia – New Zealand and Australia axes. . The objective will be to bring together representatives of these areas to engage in dialogue about the challenges faced by the territories that protect these ecosystems worldwide and the solutions that are being developed for their protection.