History of Private Land Conservation in the State of Mato Grosso do Sul
For 15 years (2001-2016), the Association of Private Reserve Owners of Mato Grosso do Sul – REPAMS, together with the non-governmental organization WWF-Brazil, have been seeking to engage new reserve owners in the fight to expand and defend environmental conservation efforts in Mato Grosso do Sul. To consolidate this important partnership, the organizations have come together to publish this history, hoping to present their shared experiences on private lands in Mato Grosso do Sul.
REPAMS and WWF-Brazil have been supporting the establishment of private reserves as a way to preserve important forest remnants in the Cerrado and the Pantanal. To achieve this, the organizations have adopted strategies that include liaising with owners to change mindsets, dispel myths, break paradigms and foster a greater sense of respect for traditional knowledge.
The main goal behind RPPN is the conservation of biodiversity, and these reserves are generally recognized for the important role they play in the protection of fauna and flora species. When a conservation unit of this kind is created, landowners retain full property rights and greater access to support from public agencies, non-governmental organizations, civil society, etc.
For REPAMS and WWF-Brazil, the creation and management of private reserves will lead to sustainable production and environmental preservation by integrating production and conservation to build a more conscientious and sustainable agenda. This action seeks to create protected areas within biomes like the Pantanal and the Cerrado, complementary to the creation of public protected areas, thus strengthening the conservation unit system in these regions.
REPAMS was founded in Mato Grosso do Sul in 2003 and, since then, it has been working to consolidate itself locally by establishing institutional partnerships and offering technical support to RPPN owners. In the last few years, the partner organizations have fought to achieve autonomy and to ensure the financial sustainability they need to maintain their activities.In 2016, after 15 years of partnership, REPAMS and WWF-Brazil, through the Cerrado Pantanal Program, decided to publish a history of their experiences together.