Meso-America Regional Meeting




Meso-America Regional Meeting "Advancing Biodiversity Conservation Practice in Mesoamerica":

Date: August 25-27, 2014

Venue: CATIE Campus, Turrialba, Costa Rica

Conservation is a defined set of specific actions that are performed to conserve biodiversity at different levels (ecosystems, wildlife, and natural genetic variability) with the active participation of an informed civil society. The conservation of biodiversity is, in essence, a social process with positive biological effects, given that the causes of land degradation can only be addressed through the active involvement of communities, groups and societies in the region.

In this context, the Organization of American States and the United States Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) recently launched Mesoamerica 2020, a conservation initiative that seeks to capitalize on the region’s most valuable natural resource: people. The objective of Mesoamerica 2020 is two-fold: 1) work with key actors at the individual, organizational and group levels to address the underlying human dimensions of species and ecosystem conservation at the landscape level and 2) strengthen the capacity of Mesoamerican individuals and institutions to be stewards of the land and secure a sustainable future.

Mesoamerica 2020 partnered with the Centro Agronómico Tropical de Investigación y Enseñanza (CATIE) to host the Meso-America Regional Meeting "Advancing Biodiversity Conservation Practice in Mesoamerica" held at the CATIE Campus in Turriabla Costa Rica from August 25 to 27, 2014. The meeting brought together conservation practitioners from 7 Mesoamerican countries as well as representatives from other countries in the Americas to share lessons learned, promote the use of best practices, and identify training needs for the region.

Meeting participants were divided in the following five working groups to discuss specific conservation issues and challenges

  • Protected territories (all categories of protected areas) and unprotected areas(biological corridors, buffer zones etc.)
  • Rural Communities (Community Conservation Initiatives), inclusion and equity in the conservation processes
  • Units and household production systems (biodiversity friendly productive practices)
  • Education and capcity building for conservation practice
  • Organization and local governance for conservation

Meeting participants also prepared and presented posters showcasing conservation best practices and projects implemented in their organizations.