Presentations and Coalition Weekly Podcasts
Fixing the Amazon Forest Market Failure
by Daniel Nepstad of the Earth Innovation Institute
Your Money and the Amazon Forest
by Leonardo Letelier of SITAWI Finance for Good
Investing in Sustainable Amazon Forest Entrepreneurship
by Luis Fernando Laranja of Kaete Investments
The Fourth Industrial Revolution, Science and the Amazon Forest Bio-Economy
by Maritta Koch-Weser of the Amazion Third Way Initiative
The Economy of Deforestation Resistance: Scaling Up Community Led Enterprises in the Amazon
by Marina Campos of Conexsus / Sustainable Connections Institute
Amazon Forest Rule of Law: Landgrabbing, Deforestation and Amnesties in Brazil
by Brenda Brito of Imazon (Institute of Man and Environment of the Amazon)
Green Bonds, Sustainability and New Amazon Forest Financial Products
by Justine Leigh-Bell of the Climate Bonds Initiative
Venezuela’s Illegal Mining, Human Suffering & Environmental Disaster in the Amazon Forest
by Cristina Vollmer Burelli of SOS Orinoco
Humans and Nature: Are We Part of the Ecosystem? Roles for Entertainment and Technology
by Cacau Araujo of the Alana Institute
My Rainforest Journey: Revolutionizing Conservation with 21st Century Innovations
by Peter Houlihan of XPRIZE Rainforest
Weekly Coalition Podcasts
A Corporation Scaling the Amazon Forest Bio-Economy and Teaching Others the Same
by Daniel Sabara of Beraca S.A.
Impact Investing Approaches in the Amazon Rainforest and Crowd Lending
by Leonardo Letelier of SITAWI Finance for Good
Amazon Forest Economy Market Failures and Opportunities
by Daniel Nepstad of the Earth Innovation Institute
Alternative Governance and Economic Models for the Amazon Region
by Atossa Soltani, Juan Manuel Crespo, Belem Paez of the Sacred Headwaters Initiative and Jonah Sachs of the One Project
Previously Recorded Weekly Podcasts. Coming Soon…
An Inter-Governmental Reforestation Alliance for Latin America
Walter Vergara: In 2014, in Lima, Peru, at COP 20, the Conference of Parties of the 20th United Nations Climate Change Conference, 17 Latin American countries joined forces and created Initiative 20×20 to advance ecosystem restoration and conservation. Today, over 70 technical partners and impact investors have pledged to invest $2.5 billion across the region. Join the 20×20 secretariat, led by Walter Vergara, to learn their story and their strategies and what it means for the Amazon.
COVID-19 and the Indigenous Amazon
Natalie Unterstell: As former head of climate change and forests at the environment ministry in Brazil, Natalie Unterstell knows the Amazon. Following a different path in 2020, she helped to create United for a Living Amazon to mobilize celebrities and philanthropists to support indigenous communities in the face of the COVID-19. Join Natalie to learn about the pandemic and its impact on the health of traditional Amazon communities.
Ecosystem Service Measurements, Credits and Bank Carbon Offsets
Alex Simiema: For the past 14 years, Alex Simiema has worked to build a new Brazilian business that measures carbon stocks and water flows. Today, his company, Brasil Mata Viva, partners with the government of the Brazillian state of Amapá to publish certified ecosystem service credits for landowners to sell and pay for conservation. To date several of Brazil’s largest banks have purchased the credits as carbon offsets. Join us to meet Alex and learn about his journey.
Predicting Deforestation from Space and Designing New Forest Credits
Diego Saez Gil: Originally conceived in 2005, the United Nations framework for forest financing has struggled to scale. Certifying avoided deforestation and financing it is complex and expensive. As a Latin American tech entrepreneur, Diego Saez Gil wanted to help so in 2018 he founded Pachama. Supported by satellite imaging and artificial intelligence, the company buys certified forest credits originated from the Amazon and elsewhere. Diego and his team then resell the credits to Microsoft and other companies as carbon offsets. Now Pachama is working to originate less expensive credits, and at scale with its technology, so that we can better scale financing to reduce deforestation. Diego joins us to share his story.
The Amazon Opportunity for Pharmacological and Biomimetic Entrepreneurship
Dr. Maritta Koch-Weser: The Amazon Third Way Initiative wants the forest to benefit from the next industrial revolution, the one based on knowledge and data instead of extraction. As a hotbed of biodiversity, the Amazon is holding secrets that can lead to major breakthroughs in pharmaceutical and biomimetic entrepreneurship. These innovations can help ensure the forest is worth more alive and standing then cut and burned. Dr. Maritta Koch-Weser joins us to share the story.
Uniting the Right and Left for Land Tenure Reform
Alexandre Mansur: An estimated 90% of Amazon deforestation is illegal. People occupy land, raise cattle and lobby for land titles. A new campaign called “Be Legal with the Amazon” reduces the incentive by pushing for regularization of “undesignated” lands. The campaign united both environmentals and the agricultural industry to support the cause. That’s a big deal. Alexandre Mansur joins us to tell the story.
Consensus Building and the Amazon Strategies of a Brazilian Philanthropy
Renata Piazzon: Like the gun control debate in the United States, the politics of Amazon conservation are polarized and paralyzed. Renata Piazzon tells the story of the “Concertation for the Amazon,” a new group of one hundred of Brazil’s most influential leaders coming together to design a new vision for development of the region. Renata works with Instituto Arapyau, the philanthropic venture of Guilherme Leal, co-founder of the Natura cosmetics giant.
Finance and Market Access Innovations for the Amazon
Marina Campos: Small community producers are the center of the local Amazon bio-economy. Unfortunately, they have limited access to financing and markets. Marina Campos tells the story of Conexsus and the interventions the NGO makes to bring finance, market access and technical support to these cooperatives, indigenous communities and traditional populations.
Mining and Deforestation in Venezuela
Cristina Vollmer Burelli: Though not yet visible in newspaper headlines, the Venezuela Amazon may be suffering the worst environmental disaster of the Western Hemisphere. Cristina Burelli joins us to tell the story of SOS Orinoco and its efforts to mitigate the impacts of illegal mining in the Orinoco river basin, an essential process to prevent conflicts from exploding into the wider region.
Food Innovation in the Brazilian Amazon and a Regenerative Forestry Startup
Derek Brett Gallo: The new startup, Awi Superfoods, works in the Brazilian Amazon to promote rainforest regeneration through agroforestry, to improve lives through community involvement, and to earn income through food innovation.
German Investment Strategies in the Brazilian Amazon
Alexander Borges Rose: The German Corporation for International Cooperation, or GIZ for short, is one of the largest funders of Amazon conservation in Latin America. Alexander Borges Rose joins us to explain some of their investment strategies in the welfare of indigenous peoples, bio-economy entrepreneurship, forest financing mechanisms, land registration, and more.
The Land Accelerator
Amanda Gant: If you’re an Amazon region agroforestry farmer and you want to restore degraded land by producing a new crop for sale to the North American market, it can be hard to get started. The new Land Accelerator guides the way. Founded in 2020 by the World Resources Institute, the Accelerator offers a 4 month course to help entrepreneurs with crop selection, financial analysis, pitching investors and more. Amanda Gant joins us to tell the story.
Improving Amazon Bio-Economy Market Intelligence
Daniel Contrucci: If sustainable Amazon produce can reach global markets it can finance conservation. Lab Amazonia, a recent collaboration among key stakeholders in the region produced new intelligence on market opportunities and revealed strategies that simultaneously increase demand and reduce the costs of transportation and logistics. Examples include developing transportation and distribution hubs, improving online sales, and developing a macro-level brand to promote commerce from the region. Daniel Contrucci of Climate Ventures joins us to tell the story.
A Beverage Startup to Halt Human Trafficking and Reduce Deforestation
Terra Judge: REBBL tea is now a household name in the United States. But, did you know that it was founded as en effort to fight human trafficking and improve indigenous livelihoods that protect the Amazon forest? Terra Judge joins us to tell the story.
Microphilanthorpy in the Amazon
Maria Amalia Souza: Microphilanthropy is not easy. It is the process of investing small dollar amounts in strategic projects. It is especially challenging at scale and in a region as complex as the Amazon. But Casa does it. The Casa Socio-Environmental Fund unites local leaders and large global foundations, offers small grant capabilities, and supports sustainability, justice and community-level protagonism across South America, with a special footprint in the Amazon. Maria Amalia Souza joins us to tell the story.
Sharing Sustainable Land Use Knowledge Globally
John Colmey: The Global Landscapes Forum is the world’s largest platform for sharing integrated land-use knowledge. Founded by the World Bank and the United Nations Environment Program, the Global Landscapes Forum breaks down research silos and works to reconcile nature conservation with economic activity. John Colmey joins us to tell the story.
Responsible Artisanal Gold Mining in the Amazon
Susan Keane: There is an epidemic of artisanal gold mining in the Amazon. It pollutes the river with mercury and poisons indigenous communities. The Minimata Convention is an international treaty signed in 2013 to protect people and the environment from mercury pollution. Because of this treaty, today, planetGOLD works to make small-scale gold mining safer, cleaner, and more profitable around the world, with programs across the Amazon. Susan Keane joins us to tell the story.
The UN’s Decade on Ecosystem Restoration and the REDD Programme
Gabriel Labbate: In the months to come we will discuss the role of intergovernmental cooperation and the United Nations in protecting the Amazon. First up, did you know that 2021 kicks off the UN Decade of Ecosystem Restoration, a global call to action to prevent, halt and reverse degradation of our ecosystems. Gabriel Labbate joins us to discuss the decade as well as his work on the UN REDD Programme. That is R.E.D.D. which stands for Reduced Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation. It is a UN framework that systematizes deforestation prevention. Gabriel’s program gives technical support to governments to help them plan and implement REDD commitments. Join us to learn more.
Syntropic Farming and Agroforestry in the Amazon
Fernando Russo: Agroforestry, or farming with trees, maximizes solar intake and produces greater yields in smaller areas. Fernando Russo, founder of Meraki Impact, joins us to describe his enthusiasm for syntropic agroforestry and his investment in reNature, a new, global agroforestry startup building model farms and schools.
Investing in Deforestation Free Commodities
Brett Mallen: The government of Norway invested $100 million dollars in the “&Green Fund” to de-risk the investments of others and mobilize up to $2 billion in additional sustainability financing. Managed by Sail Ventures, the Fund aims to protect 5 million hectares of land while improving the lives of 1 million smallholder farmers, including many in the Amazon. Brett Mallen joins us to tell the story.
Green Bonds and Sustainable Agriculture in Brazil
Justine Leigh-Bell: Founded in 2010, the Climate Bonds Initiative works to mobilize the $100 trillion bond market for climate change solutions. Justine Leigh-Bell joins us to describe the extraordinary growth of the sector. The initiative has identified a $160 billion opportunity for Brazil to transition to sustainable agriculture. Join us to learn more..
Acumen and Amazon Investments
Virgilio Barco: Founded 20 years ago, the Acumen Fund supports social enterprises that serve low-income communities in developing countries. The Acumen Latin America program invests in Amazon region agribusinesses to improve commercial viability and increase income for small-holder farmers. The Latin American director of Acumen, Virgilio Barco, joins us today to tell the story.
Amazon Bio-Economy and Health
Marcelo Salazar: This week we learn how better public health and the commercialization of key forest products can help reduce deforestation. Marcelo Salazar is an Amazon pioneer. For more than a decade he has worked to advance forest based economies through Instituto Socio-Ambiental. Now, today, he also is working on a new strategy to reduce deforestation by improving public health. Originally conceived in Indonesia, Marcelo is helping to bring the Health-in-Harmony program to the Amazon for the first time. We mention a new Amazon candy bar startup as well.
Investing in Amazonian Forestry
Amrita Vatsal: Founded in the mid 2000s, EFM invests in companies that address the climate crisis and social inequality. Setting up shop in South America just 1 year ago, they are developing a pipeline of projects to sequester carbon, advance sustainable land use, and create alternative livelihoods. Amrita Vatsal joins us to share the story and discusses Colombia’s carbon tax. Thought priced at just $5/ton, the system finances a local market for emissions reduction. Though some forest projects rely on the market for profitability, some agroforestry projects do not. Join us to learn the story.
Designing an Agroforestry Financial Product for the Amazon
Panel discussion with Ethan Steinberg of Propagate Ventures, Mark Chasan of Transformative Capital, Daniel Sabara of Beraca, Walter Vergara of Initiative 20×20 and Amanda Ravenhill of Regenerosity, and Others: Amazon reforestation is essential for ecosystem integrity. Community-led agroforestry can make the process profitable and scalable. How can we design Green Bonds and other financial products to protect vulnerable areas, replace monocultures with polycultures, restore biodiversity, empower traditional communities, and create wealth? Join Propagate Ventures co-founder Ethan Steinberg, regenerative economy evangelist Mark Chasan and others to discuss the possibilities for the Amazon.
Philanthropy for a New Bio-Economy in the Amazon: Fundo Vale
Marcia Soares: As one of Brazil’s largest mining companies, Vale also sponsors one of the Amazon’s largest grantmakers. By creating innovative financial mechanisms and strengthening businesses with positive social and environmental impacts, Fundo Vale, or the Vale Fund, is helping Brazil to become a global leader in bio-economics. Building on experience preserving and restoring the Amazon, the Fund was created 10 years ago. Marcia Soares joins us to tell the story.
Philanthropy for a Low Carbon Economy of the Amazon: Climate and Society Institute
Gustavo Pinheiro: The Climate and Society Institute mobilizes resources and develops networks to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by advancing low carbon economies, promoting policy engagement, and transforming land-use strategies towards conservation and away from deforestation. Gustavo Pinheiro joins us to share the vision.
Investing in New Market Opportunities in the Amazon: Perspectives of a Local Amazonian Retailer
Denis Minev: Today we learn about one man’s journey to advance Amazon-region eco-entrepreneurship. Denis Minev is an Amazonian business leader, investor and philanthropist. As President of Bemol, one of the region’s largest chain of retail stores, Denis advocates for conservation through a kind of economic development that mobilizes new entrepreneurs, reduces bureaucracy, and pioneers technological innovation.
The US Government and the Future of the Amazon Forest
Panel Discussion by Alexandre Alves of USAID Brazil, Meg Symington of WWF, Daniel Nepstad of the Earth Innovation Institute, Andrew Miller of Amazon Watch: The US election and the arrival of a new US Presidential administration could change many business, political and conservation priorities for the Amazon region. Diverse events ranging from presidential debate remarks to Paris agreement support have created much speculation. How will these changes impact South American environmental policy and the future of Amazon conservation? Several groups join us to discuss, including representatives from USAID Brazil, Amazon Watch, the World Wildlife Fund, and the Earth Innovation Institute.
International Law and Protecting the Amazon
Astrid Puentes: Today we discuss international rule-of-law and the Amazon. You can’t have healthy economic development across the Amazon without the healthy rule of law. Founded in 1998, AIDA, the Interamerican Association for Environmental Defense, protects our right to a healthy environment by using the power of international law to create sustainable solutions across Latin America. As co-director of AIDA, Astrid Puentes joins us to tell the story.
New Technology and Market Access for the Amazon
Keith Agoada: Today we see technology connect smallholder farmers and global markets. While some Amazonian producers struggle to access markets, Producers Market provides a technology solution. Bringing efficiency to the $4.3 trillion agriculture industry, the company connects buyers and producers, provides sustainability verification processes, develops “smart value chains” and incorporates new storytelling technologies to help branding and marketing. The company fonder, Keith Agoada, joins us to tell the story.
Amazon Region Trade and Bio-Economy Entrepreneurship
Raoni Rajao: Professor Raoni Rajão of the Federal University of Minas Gerais (UFMG) researches the relationship between science, technology and policy with a focus on deforestation, trade, and payments for environmental services. How are trade policies impacting development in the Amazon? What are the primary drivers towards and away from sustainability? Professor Rajão joins us to help us all understand.
Conflict Resolution: Towards Responsible Mining in the Amazon
Juliana Dib Rezende and Vasco van Roosmalen: Today we discuss how to do responsible mining in the Amazon. While mining is traditionally among the most environmentally destructive industries, new approaches to community involvement and dispute resolution can democratize wealth distribution and limit environmental impact. By facing the challenges and seizing the opportunities of the extractive industry in the Amazon, the Utu Social Impact Fund helps victim communities access environmental licensing finance to conduct local social and economic development planning processes. Julia Dib Rezende and Vasco van Roosmalen join us to tell the story.
The Quest for Land Rights and Tenure
Nonette Royo: Today we learn about indigenous land tenure. Traditional indigenous territories encompass 22 percent of the world’s land and 80% of the planet’s biodiversity, but governments only recognize legal ownership of a fraction of it, thereby putting lives and ecosystems at risk. The International Land and Forest Tenure Facility serves as a financial mechanism to help traditional communities secure land rights and live sustainably. It supports communities globally, including in the Amazon. Nonette Royo, the Executive Director of the Facility, joins us to tell the story.
Root Causes, Rule of Law, and Delivery Units
Daniela Castro: Today we learn about governance, rule of law and the Brazilian Amazon. An attorney and impact advisory consultant and founder of Impacta Advocacy, Daniela Castro sought to understand the root causes of Amazon deforestation. Through a lengthy investigation of industry, policy, law enforcement, and government operations, she has identified key levers for change, including mechanisms that monitor and support the operation, transparency and accountability of government programs – a “Delivery Unit.” Join us to learn more.
Building a Sub-National Climate Fund with an Amazon Focus
Sub-national Climate Fund Panel Discussion with David Cogut and Patrick Scheurle of Pegasus Capital, Christophe Nuttall from R20 Regions of Climate Action, and Pierre Rousseau of BNP Paribas : Today we discuss climate-focused infrastructure investments and the Amazon. Concerned about planetary sustainability, a team of investor, non-profit and government institutions, joined forces in 2020 to launch the Sub-national Climate Fund Global (SnCF) to finance nature-based solutions to climate change. Positioned to mobilize $750 million with seed funding from the Green Climate Fund, the group is poised to support projects in dozens of countries, including the Amazon region of South America. Learn from several partners representing a private equity group, Pegasus Capital, a bank, BNP Paribas, and an NGO focused on sub-national government action, the R20 – Regions for Climate Action, originally founded by Arnold Schwarzenegger.
Supporting Indigenous Amazon Entrepreneurs
Marcelo Cwerner: Today we learn about indigenous entrepreneurs in the Amazon. Many valuable fruits, nuts, herbs and other forest products originate from the Amazon. Even though these resources are sought by consumers, source communities are at risk of losing their land, nature and livelihoods. To help promote conservation, NESsT partnered with indigenous organizations to develop programs that scale Amazon-centric ventures to global markets. Marcelo Cwerner of NEsST joins us to tell the story.
XPRIZE Rainforest Award for New Biodiversity Assessment Technologies
Peter Houlihan: Today we learn latest on the XPRIZE Rainforest. The XPRIZE Rainforest offers a $10 million reward for the best new biodiversity assessment technologies. Improved data and increased understanding of the ecosystem can help accelerate new, equitable and sustainable bioeconomies. Peter Houlihan will share the latest about the competition.
NGO and Intergovernmental Action through the Leticia Pact and Platform
Today we discuss Amazon inter-governmental collaboration and the Leticia Pact. In September 2019, as Amazon fires attracted global attention, Colombian President Ivan Duque convened heads of state and officials from 7 regional countries in the Amazon city of Leticia to advance inter-governmental cooperation. The group pledged to exchange green technologies, expand reforestation efforts, develop disaster response networks, explore alternatives to fire, and more. Diverse institutions and organizations are involved including the World Economic Forum, the Inter-American Development Bank (IADB), the Paulson Institute, the Amazon Cooperation Treaty Organization, and more. Tune in this week to learn about this extraordinary effort and the Leticia Platform designed by the IADB to help match investors with projects in the Colombian Amazon and beyond. Amanda Paulson of the Bobolink Foundation and Yves Lesenfents from the IADB join us for the conversation.
The Amazon Bio-Economy Impact Investing of Althelia/Mirova Capital
Alan Batista: Today we learn about Amazon bio-economy investing by Mirova Natural Capital (formerly the Althelia Biodiversity Fund Brazil). Mirova is a leading investor in bio-economy entrepreneurship of the Amazon region with investments in agroforestry, sustainable beef, and more. Originally founded as Althelia Ecosphere, receiving support from the European Investment Bank and subsequent support from the USAID Development Credit Authority, their biodiversity fund was later acquired by Mirova. As a reference for private and public sector blended finance, the fund has learned a lot and refined their investment thesis along the way, adapting to the special needs of the Amazon region. Join us to learn about their journey with Alan Batista.1
Payment-for-Conservation Innovations in the Amazon: The CONSERV Program
Today we learn about payment-for-conservation innovations in the Amazon. Initiated in 2020, CONSERV pays select farmers to conserve forests beyond the legal limits required for privately held Amazon land under the Brazilian Forest Code. The strategy addresses historic obstacles of forest finance, by 1) Applying the program across discrete geographies of highest deforestation risk, 2) Requiring landowners to comply with 100% of their properties, and 3) Arranging time-bound contracts. With permanence, additionality, leakage, and jurisdiction concerns considered, will the CONSERV program scale? IPAM, EDF and Norway are on board, but who else? Andre Guimaraes of IPAM and Marcelo Stabile of CONSERV join us for the conversation.
How Did Sambazon Become America’s Largest Açaí Retailer?
Ryan Black: Today we learn about bringing açaí to the world. After traveling to Brazil and tasting açaí, Ryan Black co-founded Sambazon in 2001 together with his brother Jeremy and Ed Nichols. Twenty years later, the company is now one of the largest bringing the Amazon superfruit to markets around the world. As a key harvest that brings economic value to standing forests, investors and entrepreneurs want to repeat the açaí success story with other non-timber forest products. What makes açaí special? How much will the market grow? How did Sambazon succeed? What is next? Join us to learn from Ryan Black and more.
Partnership Platform for the Amazon: An Entrepreneurship Incubator and Accelerator
Alexandre Alves: Today we discuss how to accelerate and invest in Amazon bioeconomy startups. Alexandre Alves of USAID Brazil works to build platforms for collective action. After uniting philanthropy of multi-national companies in Sao Paulo through Grupo +Unidos, he repeated the same in Manaus. Today, the Partnership Platform for the Amazon mobilizes investors to support Amazon-region businesses and accelerates startups that expand regional bioeconomies. Join us to learn Alexandre’s journey. What is next? What new support can we expect from the Biden administration? As a Latin American enclave, can Florida become part of an Amazon-focused investor-entrepreneur bioeconomy and commercial trade development pipeline?
The Future of Amazon Ecotourism
Today we learn about the role of ecotourism in Amazon conservation from governments, operators, NGOs, and indigenous communities. Ecotourism is expected to be a $333.8B market by 2027, growing faster than the regular tourism industry before the pandemic. Tourism to protected areas also has the potential to channel 60x more income to these areas than conservation funding; Costa Rica is a prime example of the potential of this industry to transform economic development in the Amazon. However, the Amazon ecotourism industry is fragmented, lacking infrastructure that could connect the region and empower growth, and has proven to be vulnerable to shocks like the current pandemic. What investments, tools, and programs are needed to scale this industry nationally and across the region? How can governments, investors, and businesses capitalize on the potential of this market to fund the conservation of protected areas and indigenous territories? Join the discussion with Thiago Beraldo, Richard Bodmer, Jon Bruno, Carla James, Gabriel Minas Amaya, and Sophia Wood.
An Industry Federation that Promotes Sustainable Amazon Business and Innovation
Marcelo Thomé da Silva de Almeida: Today we discuss developing industry in the Amazon. In November, 2020, hundreds of people from science, business, government, civil society and other sectors gathered online for AMAZÔNIA +21, a new online forum dedicated to advancing sustainable development across the Amazon. Pioneered by the Port Velho Development Agency, the forum has 4 themes: Sustainable Business, Culture, Funding and Science & Innovation. Independent of government and politics, the forum will expand with support from the Rondonia State Industry Federation and many others. What is next? Who is involved? What opportunities exist for ongoing learning and collaboration with this unique network? Join the conversation with Marcelo Thomé da Silva de Almeida, President of the Rondonia State Industry Federation.
Fashion and Future Amazon Sustainability
Beto Bina: Today we discuss the fashion industry and the Amazon. As a $2+ trillion industry, fashion affects Amazon deforestation. While consumption of uncertified leather drives cattle expansion, purchase of native rubber pays for conservation. How can fashion help? What is the history and future of Amazon rubber? What are the market opportunities for Amazon plant fibers? What is the role of new technology? Join a conversation with Beto Bina of Farfarm to learn.
Exporting Amazon Produce to the World: 50 Products from 25 Species
Fernanda Stefani: Today we help bring Amazon produce to the world. Eleven years ago Fernanda Stefani set out to scale the Amazon bioeconomy. Today 100% Amazonia serves as a bridge selling millions of dollars of sustainable forest produce to international markets. Three years ago the company started their “Factory of the Forest” project, gaining the ability to process certain foods and grow. Now selling 50 products from 25 different species to dozens of countries, the priorities are about tracing, certification, food safety and more. What fruits, nuts, oils and butters are available? Who are the buyers? Join us to learn about taking camu-camu, graviola, acerola, cupuaçu, murumuru, buriti, açai and many other Amazon favorites to the world.
Film, Uncontacted Peoples and Tribes on the Edge
Today we learn about uncontacted tribes, film and more. The Javari Valley is home to the largest concentration of uncontacted tribes in the Amazon and the world. Adjacent to the Peru-Colombia-Brazil border, the indigenous territory is larger than Austria. In 2010, Beto Marubo, of the Union of Indigenous People, reached out and asked Celine Cousteau for help. Ten years later, “Tribes on the Edge” was released as a feature-length documentary reporting about the ever-present threats to tribal lands and health crises triggered by contact with outsiders. Today, Celine and Tadzio Mac Gregor work to support Beto and his people to advance local indigenous health, culture, livelihoods, and advocacy as well as biodiversity discovery. What does the future hold for the Javari Valley and its people? How can films, brands, and celebrity work together to defend the vulnerable?
A History of UN Action on the Amazon
Charles McNeill: Today we learn about corporate declarations, carbon, faith communities and historic UN action related to the Amazon. Charles McNeill joined the United Nations in 1991 and spent most of the past 30 years working for sustainability, forest conservation, indigenous community leadership and more. Join us to discuss the history of UN action related to the Amazon. What was the Rio Earth Summit? What is REDD+? What about the New York Declaration on Forests, the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues, the Equator Prize, and the UN Forum on Forests? What is the Interfaith Rainforest Initiative? What UN member states support these platforms? How can private investors and philanthropists collaborate with them?
Imlak’esh Organics Brings Produce from the Andes Amazon to Global Markets
Tucker Garrison: Today we learn about agroforestry entrepreneurship and accessing US markets. After life-transforming dietary changes, Tucker Garrison went in search of Amazon superfoods. He found great produce and producers but limited market access. Soon, Imak’esh Organics was born as a line of trade to bring superfoods to international markets while creating sustainable livelihoods in source communities. Join us to learn about Sachi Inchi, Macambo beans and other special foods from the Amazon.
Serial Entrepreneur and Amazonia B: Building the Next Amazon Entrepreneurship Accelerator
Bruno Kato: Today we learn about a new bioeconomy accelerator and investment portfolio. Bruno Kato is an Amazonian serial entrepreneur. After time in Southern Brazil working with big corporations, he returned to the Amazon and started his own companies. In 2020, he convened investors, evaluated hundreds of Amazon-region businesses, and selected a handful to form a new investment portfolio called the Amazonia B Sustainable Business Accelerator.
The Trillion Trees Amazon Bioeconomy Challenge
Businesses, cooperatives, and others involved in the Amazon bioeconomy, as producers or market enablers, can access funders and global markets through the Amazon Bioeconomy Challenge. Brazil nut collectors, açaí harvesters, pharmaceutical entrepreneurs, ecotourism operators and allies can qualify alongside indigenous handwork retailers, fintech solution providers, legal advisory teams, and others dedicated to helping advance the forest-friendly economy. Where did the Bioeconomy Challenge come from? Who are the partners involved? What kinds of visibility, financing, and market access opportunities will be offered? What is the timeline? Join us to learn the answers to these questions and more with Florian Reber of 1t.org and the World Economic Forum.
Science Research to Advance the Amazon economy.
World Transforming Technologies (WTT) was launched in 2012 to promote innovation as a way to solve social and environmental problems. Concerned about the innovation ecosystem of the Amazon, WTT built upon the work of the CERTI Foundation to understand the stumbling blocks of the local bioeconmy across stages of knowledge development, business creation, acceleration, and growth. They learned that despite significant levels of education and scientific research on the bioeconomy, relatively few startups are created. In response, WTT created the Innovation Orchestration Center to mobilize researchers and help overcome barriers where Amazon bioeconomy success is limited by scientific development. Join us to learn more together with Andre Wongtchowski, head of WTT operations.
The Amaz Impact Business Accelerator
AMAZ is a new impact business accelerator for the Amazon region. Building upon the experiences of the Partnership Platform for the Amazon with USAID Brazil, and the Institute of Conservation and Sustainable Development of the Amazon (IDESAM), Mariano Cenamo has mobilized a new coalition of investors and allies dedicated to scaling the Amazon-region bioeconomy. What industries are ready for growth? Who are the portfolio companies to date? Who are the funders? Join us to meet Mariano Cenamo and learn from his journey.
MAAP – The Monitoring the Andes Amazon Project
Join us to hear from Matt Finer of Amazon Conservation about the Monitoring of the Andean Amazon Project (MAAP), and the revolutionary power of satellite technology for monitoring and thwarting illegal forest activity. By harnessing 5 satellite systems, MAAP uses its eyes in the sky to provide rapid insights into the occurrence of illegal logging, fire, and mining. MAAP bridges technology and policy by delivering actionable insights to governments and communities–in time for preventative and responsive action. How can the broader Amazon community better leverage MAAP’s deforestation and fire alerts? What does MAAP portend about the intensifying 2021 fire season? What opportunities exist for making technology more effective at helping to halt illegal activity? What are the most urgent Amazon deforestation trends and hotspots that have emerged over this last year? Join us to meet Matt Finer and learn more from his journey to advance near-real-time monitoring of Amazonia.
An Ecuadorian-American Beverage Company Regenerates the Amazon
Join us to meet bioeconomy entrepreneur Tyler Gage and learn the story behind Runa LLC, the Ecuadorian-American beverage company and its namesake foundation. After discovering the energizing properties of guayusa, Tyler Gage co-founded Runa in 2008 to bring the tea to international markets. After nearly a decade of expansion, the company was acquired in 2017 and now provides income to 600 indigenous Kichwa farmers from the Ecuadorian Amazon. Today, Gage works with Terrafertil, the Aliados Foundation, and others as an investor and advisor to support more just and sustainable communities.
The World Bank’s Amazon Sustainable Landscapes Program
Join us to meet Amazon Sustainable Landscapes Program (ASL) Program Coordinator Ana María Gonzalez and learn about this GEF funded impact program and its joint efforts and future plans to promote conservation and sustainable development in targeted areas of the Amazon; under the premise of “Connecting People and Institutions to Connect Landscapes.” The ASL is currently being implemented in Brazil, Colombia and Peru and in the following months a second phase will initiate with additional projects in Bolivia, Ecuador, Guyana and Suriname. The ASL also includes a regional project that promotes collaboration among governments, implementing agencies, civil society and the donor community.
Forest-friendly Export Opportunities of the Brazilian Amazon
One of the biggest questions for the future of the Amazon is how to boost regenerative and low carbon economic development. While many responses involve the search for new products or markets, the Amazon has great room for expansion in the markets of the products its companies already export. What are the market opportunities? How will local Amazonian governments expedite them? What regulations can be applied for the enforcement of labor, environmental, food safety, and more? How can governments promote economic development despite certain restrictions? Join us to learn and meet Salo Coslovsky, an Associate Professor at New York University and an affiliated researcher with the Amazonia 2030 project. At NYU, he teaches courses related to government agencies, national development strategies, and local economic development. He conducted his undergraduate studies at FGV-SP, masters at the Fletcher School of Law & Diplomacy and doctorate at MIT.
Weaving Philanthropy, Business and Sustainability
The Humanize Institute unites strategies and networks to strengthen Brazilian philanthropy and key institutions of sustainable development. The institute works to weave together an ecosystem that integrates philanthropy, public institutions, private investment and impact businesses, in order to leverage resources and skills while contributing to regional development. How are Amazon projects financed? How are sustainability strategies adopted in businesses and markets? How do Humanize programs advance sustainable business management activities in the region? How do Brazilian philanthropies work together on the Amazon conservation? Join us to meet the Institute’s Sustainability Manager, Ana Carolina Avzaradel Szklo, and learn.
Leadership and Collaboration of Sub-National Governments
Join us to learn about the Governors’ Climate and Forests Task Force and their sub-national work with 38 states and provinces to protect tropical forests and promote sustainable development. The GCFTF promotes low-carbon development and jurisdiction-wide innovation by state-level government as a key part of forest conservation. Limiting factors include legal and political fragmentation, incentives for government leaders, and institutional capacity. How are these challenges addressed? What kinds of public private partnerships can help? What are the advantages of working sub-nationally? What are the current investment strategies at play? Join us to meet GCFTF Project Director Colleen Scanlan Lyons and learn.
Meet the JBS Fund for the Amazon
In September, 2020, the world’s largest beef producer announced the “JBS Fund for the Amazon” and pledged R$250 million Brazilian reals of support for the region. The fund will invest in three primary areas, including forest restoration, economic development and research. Where did this historic generosity come from? What dynamics of investor pressure and corporate sustainability made it possible? What projects have been financed to date? What other corporations and allies have donated to the fund so far? Join us to learn and meet Andrea Aguiar Azevedo, the Director of Programs and Projects for the fund.
Future US – Brazil Relations and the Amazon
Founded in 2006 as part of the Wilson Center in Washington, DC, the Brazil Institute works to foster understanding of Brazil’s complex reality and to support more consequential relations between Brazilian and U.S. institutions, in all sectors. Recent work has focused on Amazon deforestation, climate change, COVID-19, land-grabbing, sustainable development and more. What does Washington have in store for the Amazon? Join us to meet Anya Prusa and learn more.
Integrating Cultural and Biodiversity Conservation
From 1986 to 1990, the Colombian Government legally recognized 20 million hectares of rainforest in the Colombian Amazon region as “collective indigenous territory” or ‘resguardos.’ Today, the Gaia Amazonas Foundation continues the legacy and helps protect the region, facilitating dialogue and action that integrates Indigenous and non-indigenous knowledge systems. What is needed to establish an effective, environmental governance framework for the wider Amazon basin in partnership with Indigenous communities, local governments, nation states, and private actors? What is the North Amazon Alliance and how does this group of organizations challenge the post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework (of the Convention on Biological Diversity) to rethink global conservation strategies based on “Ecosystem and Sociocultural Connectivity?” Join us to learn and meet Francisco von Hildebrand, Executive Director of Gaia Amazonas
Amazonian Cuisine to Outcompete Deforestation Economies
Founded in 2014, Manioca sells 25+ products and raw materials from the Amazon to markets in Brazil and throughout the world. As an ambassador of Amazonian cuisine that gained traction with prominent chefs, the company recently expanded to sell directly to consumers, with products now appearing on supermarket shelves in Sao Paulo and soon around the world with global brands. As the first 2021 investee of Mirova Natural Capital and the winner of multiple awards, the company aims to show that food products based on sustainably grown Amazonian ingredients can become part of regular food consumption in both Brazil and abroad. The company’s success demonstrates how increased consumption of sustainably produced Amazonian biodiversity can sustain local livelihoods and outcompete the deforestation economy. Join us to meet Paulo Monteiro dos Reis and learn more.
Forest Trends – Forest Communities and Territorial Governance
Forest Trends (FT) has twenty years of experience partnering with indigenous communities, governments, businesses, and civil society, collaborating to conserve forests and biodiversity in the Amazon and other regions in the world. Forest Trends’ Communities and Territorial Governance Initiative (FT-CGTI) works directly with indigenous and other traditional communities to secure their rights, conserve their forests, and improve their livelihoods, through pioneering new approaches. For example, FT-CGTI has launched programs such as the Cultural Mediators Program, which integrates topics like climate change and traditional indigenous knowledge in the curricula of schools attended by indigenous children and youth. The Capacity-Building Program on Indigenous Territorial Governance is a one-year long program designed to strengthen the integrated governance of indigenous territories. Forest Trends also develops initiatives with local communities to support their economic resilience, by bringing their forest products to the marketplace. We also promote and monitor the flow of climate finance directly to indigenous territories: we co-developed the world’s first indigenous REDD+ project with the Surui people, and helped design the benefit sharing mechanism for the Acre-SISA jurisdictional program. Both the Surui Project and SISA offer very important lessons to guide future place-based carbon projects as well as jurisdictional programs, among which the need for FPIC to be a continuous process. Forest Trends continues to advocate for direct funding to indigenous peoples and other traditional communities (e.g., The Economics of Climate Change Mitigation in Indigenous Territories). Join us to meet Beto Borges and learn.
Conservation Finance for the Amazon
Debt or equity? Stocks or bonds? What kinds of financial products can help conserve the Amazon? What kinds of economic analysis can assign financial value to ecosystem services? With diverse investor options ranging from long term sustainable timber holdings to deforestation-linked sovereign bonds, the disparate actors of public and private finance are all needed for new blended finance models. Join us for a panel discussion with a diverse set of conservation finance pioneers. Panelists include Fiona Banister of Decarbonized, Peter Elwin, Planet Tracker (article), James Magowan, Arboreal Capital, Leisa de Souza of the Climate Bonds Initiative (article), Scott Edwards of the Conservation Strategy Fund, and David Meyers of the Conservation Finance Alliance.
Millions Invested in the Amazon Region
MOV Investimentos is a leading Brazilian impact investor. Since 2008, MOV has invested over 150 million USD in the Amazon, across diverse industries, including sustainable forest management, reforestation, distributed solar energy, REDD+ projects, and sustainable aquaculture of diverse species. How did MOV start? Who are the investors involved? What can we expect in the future? Join us to meet MOV Founder, Paulo Belotti, and learn.
The EcoEnterprises Fund & 20 Years of Impact Investing
Over two decades, EcoEnterprises Fund has invested in nearly 50 unique nature-positive companies in Latin America which contribute to biodiversity conservation, climate solutions and long-term economic opportunities for local peoples. The fund builds “portfolios for the planet” by providing growth capital and support to scale small community-based companies that achieve financial returns alongside social and environmental impact. How did the fund originate as an impact investing venture of the Nature Conservancy? How is it structured today? What companies are in the portfolio? Which Amazonian countries have the most investment ready markets? Which have the least, and why? Join us to learn and meet the CEO, Tammy Newmark.
Live from COP26
Ever since the Rio Earth Summit in 1992, the United Nations has convened leaders tod iscuss global environmental sustainability. At this moment, thousands have gathered Glasgow, UK, for COP26 and the latest iteration of climate change negotiations. What is different this time around? How are the needs of forests and indigenous peoples represented? Will there be progress on structuring carbon markets under Article 6 of the Paris Climate Agreement? What impact will it all have on the Amazon?
Roundtable on Tokenizing for Nature Protection
This session features a roundtable with diverse parties involved in projects that digitize conservation through tokens / NFTs for large scale nature protection. This moment of early market development is key for us to collectively envision and design a roadmap of market mechanisms that protect and regenerate the Amazon forest. For the sector to grow effectively and become a serious asset class, companies and organizations need to communicate and collaborate around key bottlenecks such as tradability, comparability, discoverability, liquidity and interoperability. The common thread that unites all stakeholders is the wish to increase the value of standing forests in partnership with the communities that inhabit them. The aim of this roundtable is to introduce project founders, investors, grantmakers, and allies to each other for collaboration. Participants include Alex Gordon-Brander & Peter Corke – Teratree, Andres Bilbao of Invert, Carlos Mejía of O2 Reserve, David Dao of Gainforest, Gilad Goren of Bitgreen, Gregory Landua of Regen Network, Kjell Clarysse of Forestbase and Merit Valdsalu of Single Earth.
Innovation and the Entrepreneurship Ecosystem
The “Amazon Journey” unites sustainability and innovation to help improve the regional entrepreneurship ecosystem. With the Amazonian superfood Açaí as a reference, countless other forest-friendly products are poised to go global – medicines, cosmetics, hardwoods, fragrances, foods, and more. The Amazon Journey supports a multi-step process, including A) Promoting bioeconomy development, B) Fostering entrepreneurial talent and research, C) Helping ideas transform into action, D) Launching new startups and connecting them to industry, E) Tracking market indicators and more. Join us to meet Janice Maciel of the CERTI Foundation and their Center for the Green Economy. Founded in 1984, CERTI is a reference for technology and innovation with a successful history supporting Brazilian sustainable development and competitiveness.
Conservation, Psychedelic Therapy Investing, and Reciprocity
As the source region of Ayahuasca, the Amazon forest has been cited repeatedly this year in corporate board rooms as the investment boom in psychedelic therapy continues to rise, projected to exceed $2 billion in 2021 alone. To prevent biopiracy, the UN CBD’s Nagoya Protocol and Brazil’s Genetic Heritage Management Council, require biodiversity-centric wealth creators to give back. To facilitate consent-based reciprocity with source communities, the Indigenous Medicine Conservation Fund is coming together with seed funding from the RiverStyx Foundation (a grantmaking pioneer in psychedelic therapy) and Dr. Bronner’s (a pioneer in fair trade). Informed by community based assessments, the Fund will support traditional knowledge preservation, public health and nature conservation in partnership with indigenous communities. Who is participating in the new fund? As a partner, what should real Allyship look like with Amazonian source communities? What is the future of Nagoya Protocol compliance? What is the future of Ayahuasca tourism and therapy? How can traditional conservationists collaborate with these religious and spiritual dimensions of the Amazon? Join us to meet Miriam Volat of the RiverStyx Foundation and learn.
The Gordon & Betty Moore Foundation & the Amazon
What does the impact of 18 years of donor engagement look like? The Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation’s Andes-Amazon Initiative has invested in the Amazon since 2003. Launched with the overarching goal of preserving regional-scale ecosystem function, the foundation has maintained a steady focus on protected areas and Indigenous lands as critical tools for conservation. Along the way, the initiative has explored strategies for supporting civil society and government, establishing sustainable finance, addressing drivers of deforestation, and building the scientific basis for understanding and conserving the Amazon. Recently, the initiative increased focus on Indigenous territorial protection, resulting in innovative approaches around technology and legal tools. Marion Adeney will lead a discussion on what the foundation has learned and of pathways forward for large-scale ecosystem conservation in the Amazon.
Corporate Procurement and Conservation Finance
If economics drives deforestation, then is the forest worth more alive and standing, or cut and burned? What comes first, Amazon forest produce or the corporate buyer of it? While some climate-conscious procurement officers may grumble about the supply and quality of select Amazon forest products, producers in the region complain about the lack of demand. Buyers and producers can join forces, but need help. Fortunately, some investors and entrepreneurs are starting to bridge the gap and launch new lines of business that finance Amazonian livelihoods and conserve forests. The innovation is the long term purchase agreement and financial products based on them. Founded in 2018, Aliados conducts Amazon-centric R&D, promotes agroforestry, strengthens cooperatives, and fosters purchase contracts with foreign buyers. With partners like Nestle, they have brought diverse produce to international markets, improved incomes of numerous local farmers,and reduced deforestation. Founded in 2005, Maua Capital is an independent fund manager based in Sao Paulo,Brazil. Through new partnerships, the firm is leveraging off-take agreements for forest-compatible products to provide upfront finance,technical assistance, and structural community resources that catalyze the bioeconomy and keep forests standing. Join us to meet the innovators, Wain Collen of the Aliados Foundation and Carolina da Costa or Maua Capital, and learn.
The Inter-American Development Bank Amazon Initiative
The Inter-American Development Bank has financed projects in all countries of the Amazon region for the past 15 years. Today, they are launching the IDB Amazon Initiative, a new conceptual framework for the IDB Group’s systematic and coordinated support of sustainable development in the region. They mobilize public and private resources for integrated development models based on the region’s cultural heritage, human capital and natural capital. Join us to learn about their strategy to bring investors to the region and deploy over $300 million as grants, first-loss capital, and other forms of blended finance. Join us to meet IDB Sustainability Specialist Yves Lesenfants and IDB Resource Mobilization Lead Daniel Hincapie to learn.
Amazon Forest Crime Prevention and Indigenous Protectors
The Forest Forces Foundation works to protect nature by forming alliances that connect traditional forest communities with access to technology, science, law enforcement and justice, at local, national and international levels. With an estimated 90% of deforestation deemed to be illegal, indigenous communities can achieve new levels of situational crime prevention through collaboration with public prosecutors, use of GPS-equipped digital camera surveillance, and the implementation of best practices from criminology and crime science. What support do indigenous communities need? How are public prosecutors involved? How, why, and when is crime prevention more effective that law enforcement? Who are the partners and law enforcement agencies that can help mitigate the illegal activities promoted by cattle, soy, mining and logging interests? Can these strategies be integrated with new approaches to landgrabbing prevention? Join us to meet criminologist Tim Boekhout van Solinge and learn.
Global Reforestation Entrepreneurship & the Amazon
Terraformation is scaling native reforestation to solve the twin global challenges of climate change and biodiversity. Founded by the former CEO of Reddit, the company provides forestry as a service including tech, training, hardware (seed banks, nurseries, desalination), and financing. Terraformation works closely with local partners worldwide toward a goal of restoring 3 billion acres of degraded land globally. What are their plans for Amazonia? How can local get involved? Join us to meet and learn from Brendan Doherty who leads their commercial work in Africa and The Americas.
Indigenous Artisanship and E-Commerce
Founded in 2011, TUCUM promotes the art and traditional craft of native Amazonian populations as an important revenue source for local communities. Selling the merchandise online, the company creates strong business partnerships with cooperatives, producers and artists while creating economically balanced relations and fostering ethics, legal compliance and sustainability. TUCUM provides direct support, structuring handicraft supply chains in collaboration with associations, families and especially women. The process celebrates diverse cultures and forms networks between traditional artisans and society. After nearly doubling revenue last year, the company is poised for growth. What will come next? How can other Amazonian communities participate? Can this success be replicated beyond Brazil? Join us to meet Amanda Santana, activist, curator, CEO and creative director of TUCUM.
The Amazon Sustainability Investment that Went Global
In 1985, seeking to reconcile nature and capitalism, Marcelo Carvalho de Andrade founded Pro Natura International to bridge the gap between economic development and environmental sustainability. His work has informed government policy, shaped corporate sustainability strategies, and guided investment ventures in over 60 countries. What is the impact so far? What is the “Protect Conserve Include” program of the Amazonian state of Mato Grosso, Brazil? What oil industry programs prevented destruction in the Peruvian Amazon? What is the world’s largest private equity fund focused exclusively on climate and sustainability? What is the Shared Value Platform developed in partnership with the International Finance Corporation? Join us to meet Marcelo, learn the answers to these questions, and find out about the history and future of biochar.
Fintech and Financial Inclusion for the Amazon
Underfunded by both investors and donors, many Amazonians struggle to access banking services, loans, insurance, payment systems, and more. Two startups are filling the gap, bringing liquidity, accountability and technology. What is the future of financial inclusion in the Amazon? Founded in 2016, Welight helps donations reach local communities by integrating with global payment networks and providing a blockchain of transaction histories. The transparency improves reporting, trust, and generosity. The tech also helps some businesses to improve accounting and investability. Founded in 2020, Impact Bank provides end-to-end financial solutions to unlock the potential of profit-for-purpose businesses and nonprofits. Active globally, Impact Bank facilitates philanthropic and impact investments in Brazil, leveraging millions in catalytic resources. New solutions help customers out-of-reach of banks and other fintechs, such as nonprofits, cooperatives, associations and others. With a blended finance architecture, the company will soon provide credit and technical assistance to forest-based ventures that have controlled risks, inclusive governance and legal certainty. Who will participate? How can new startups and NGOs join? How can investors and philanthropists help? How can they benefit? Join us to meet Gabriel Ribenboim, co-founder and CEO of Impact Bank as well as CEO of Welight.
New Farm Technologies, Precision Agriculture and Conservation
Agrosmart is the largest Agdata network in Latin America, using technology to accelerate the transition to a more productive, sustainable, and climate-resilient agriculture. Growing 170% in 2021, the company now supports over 100,000 farmers, as well as the whole agricultural supply chain. Agrosmart has a strong presence in the Amazonian region with an office in Manaus, investing in people and economic development, contributing to the entrepreneurship ecosystem and providing its technology as a tool to foster the bioeconomy and regenerative agriculture initiatives, while helping families to preserve nature. Join us to meet Agrosmart Founder & CEO, Mariana Vasconcelos, and learn.
Restoration of the Bolivian Amazon
With experience as an investor and entrepreneur in diverse industries, Ursula Pero wants to help restore the Bolivian Amazon. To raise awareness about biodiversity, she founded a non-profit. To scale soil and forest restoration, she started a company. Biodiversity Allies aims to protect and restore plant and fungal biodiversity through community resiliency, food security, and natural resource conservation. The organization develops networks, facilitates knowledge exchange, and builds biodiversity databases. As a startup venture, Land for Good is consolidating land portfolios in Bolivia and Paraguay, transitioning soy monocultures to agroforestry, and reversing desertification across over 100,000 hectares. What would it take to fully restore the Bolivian Amazon? What is the status of land tenure in Bolivia? What mix of nitrogen fixing plant species, mycorrhizal fungi, and fruit trees will be commercially viable? Join us to meet Ursula, learn the answers to these questions, and more. References: The Land Foundation (land tenure), PROBIOMA (environment), and CEDIB (human rights).
Introducing Amazonia Impact Ventures
As an impact investing company dedicated to combating deforestation and climate change, Amazonia Impact Ventures (AIV) invests primarily in indigenous cooperatives in the Amazon. With expertise in fund management and soft commodities trade finance, AIV carefully selects local enterprises that can use capital investments to increase revenues, protect forests, benefit communities and provide returns to investors. AIV aims to protect over 1 million hectares of rainforest and reaching over 200 thousand people in the next 5 years. How did the company start? Who are the partners? What industries are involved? How much has been invested to date? Join us to ask these questions, meet AIV Co-Founder Aldo Soto, and learn.
Remote Jobs and Hiring Amazonians as a Conservation Strategy
When local incomes are not enough, Amazonians need alternatives to the deforestation economy. Fortunately, remote jobs are on the rise. Recent research on post-pandemic employment trends have revealed that 60% of Americans who earn more than $100,000 a year can work remotely, indefinitely. Can the arrival of new highspeed Internet access in the Amazon foster the development of a conservation-friendly workforce? Can the Hire-Train-Deploy trend of workforce development be the solution? Can corporations develop climate strategies that hire remote Amazonians, reduce deforestation pressure, and qualify for carbon credits as a result? Join us for this panel to discuss remote workforce development, professional education in the Amazon, high speed internet access, climate-related job creation, and more. Panelists include Ronit Avni, Founder & CEO, Localized; Aline Froes, Co-Founder & Executive Director, Vai na Web; Glauco Aguiar, CEO, Manaos Tech; Julia Bussab, CAPACITACLIMA & Instituto Ananai / Youth Climate Leaders Boot Camp.
Introducing the Rainforest Foundation Norway (RFN)
Founded in 1989 in the wake of Sting and Kayapó leader Raoni’s world tour, Rainforest Foundation Norway is a pioneer in rights-based rainforest protection. Building long-term partnerships with indigenous associations and environmental and rights-based organizations in key rainforest countries, RFN combines extensive activities on-the-ground in remote rainforest regions with targeted national and international level policy action and strategic engagement with the private sector. Together with its 62 partner organizations in the six most important rainforest countries, RFN protects, on a continuous basis, more than 72 million hectares of rainforest (twice the size of Germany). Policy achievements include making Norway a global leader in public funding for rainforest protection since the UNFCCC COP-13 in Bali in 2007, influencing the world’s largest sovereign wealth fund (the USD 1.3 trillion Norway’s Government Pension Fund Global – GPFG) to make reduced deforestation and indigenous peoples’ rights one of its top responsible investment priorities and having the Norwegian salmon industry achieve that its Brazilian soy suppliers became the first soy producers in the world to deliver deforestation-free soy to all its customers, not just the environmentally conscious ones. More recently, RFN’s Falling short report (documenting that only a tiny fraction of official and philanthropic climate and forest support reaches forest peoples on the ground) played an important role in mobilizing the Glasgow $1.7 billion IPLC pledge. The ambitious goal of RFN’s 2018-2030 strategy is to ensure that the world’s large, contiguous rainforest areas are managed in ways that uphold biodiversity, forest ecosystem services and the human rights of indigenous and other forest-dependent peoples and communities. Join us to meet Lars Løvold, Director of RFN from 1990 until 2018, and currently Special Advisor in RFN’s Knowledge and Learning team.
A Brazilian Coalition of Companies and Environmentalists Working on Sustainable Land Management and Deforestation
The Brazilian Coalition on Climate, Forests and Agriculture (Coalizao BR) is a movement of 300+ groups from academia, civil society, finance, and the private sector. Created in 2014, they work on nature protection, conservation, agriculture, climate change adaptation, and sustainable use of natural and planted forests. The coalition collaborates on deforestation prevention, federal bioeconomy policy, green finance promotion, carbon market development, ecosystem restoration and Forest Code implementation. How can the Amazon help Brazil become a low-carbon economic development leader? How can Brazil reverse the upward trend of deforestation? How important is it for the private sector to get involved? Join us to meet the Coalition’s Co-Facilitator, Rachel Biderman, the Senior Vice President of the Americas for Conservation International.
Lush Cosmetics and the Amazon
Founded in 1995 in the UK, Lush has grown to be one of the world’s largest cosmetics companies with over 900 stores globally. Years ago, the company mapped the supply chains of their raw and processed materials to identify ‘sourcing hotspots.’ When layering the data over maps of biodiversity, carbon, and migration, the company understood that its sourcing communities coincided with the regions of the planet most in need of conservation. Since then, as a buying strategy, the company created ‘sourcing hubs’ in key locations, setting up demonstration farms, forming trade relationships directly with communities, and supporting local processing infrastructure development. As intended, the process created new economic livelihoods as alternatives to poaching and forest degradation, while supporting the transition from conventional agriculture to agroecology. Join us to meet Ruth Andrade, Lush Head of Environment, and Livia Froes, Lush South America Sourcing Hubs Coordinator. They will share a decade of experiences developing these programs, talk about collaboration with philanthropy, and discuss plans to verify carbon and biodiversity impacts embedded into raw materials as part of an insetting strategy.
Strategies for Flexible Grantmaking in the Amazon
Far from markets and traditional institutions, Amazonian people and organizations are often under developed and under resourced. Large investors, grantmakers and governments often struggle to help due to a perceived lack of proper infrastructure, transparency, and accountability. Forest based populations, for example, seldom have years of audited financial statements on file, a core requirement for many funders. What has been done to make grantmaking more flexible, accessible, and timely for activists and communities in the Amazon, and beyond? What more can be done? And, why? Carolina Munis has been co-creating experimental grant programs since 2014 with and for groups working in fields as varied as climate change, women’s rights, and democracy. For this session, she invites you to a conversation about inventing, remixing, and hacking the ways that resources flow through changemakers. Join the conversation with Carolina Munis, Brazil Programme Officer at the Oak Foundation.
Amazonian Fish and Sustainability
While much attention is focused on developing forest biodiversity as the basis for the Amazon bioeconomy, there is far less recognition of the enormous economic potential of the Amazon’s managed fisheries and aquaculture, and the strategic role that fish can play as an alternative to beef. Aquaculture requires only 5% of the land required by conventional beef production to produce the same amount of animal protein. Brazil has a fast growing, world class aquaculture sector, and virtually all Amazon states are investing in aquaculture. At the same time, considerable progress has been made in sustainably managing the Amazon’s floodplain fisheries as a major source of subsistence and income for traditional and indigenous communities. Fish is the most important form of animal protein traded globally and has the market power to drive development of Amazon fish production. Large scale investment in developing the potential of Amazon fish could significantly reduce pressure on Amazon forests while increasing employment and incomes for Amazon farmers and traditional and Indigenous peoples. Join the conversation with David McGrath of the Earth Innovation Institute. Reference: Policy Brief – Can Fish Drive the Development of the Amazon Bioeconomy?
The UN Principles for Responsible Investment (UN PRI), Investor Risk and Deforestation.
Deforestation is the main driver of Brazilian carbon emissions. It negatively affects agricultural productivity, biodiversity and indigenous people while posing serious reputational and operational risks for companies and investors. As one of the world’s largest producers of agricultural commodities, Brazil has a lot to lose. Fortunately, some investors are getting organized. The UN PRI is a global network of investor signatories working to put six “Principles for Responsible Investment” (PRI) into practice. The PRI works to understand the investment implications of environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues while informing investor decision-making. The PRI also serves the long-term interests of its signatories, the financial markets, the economies in which they operate and ultimately the environment and society as a whole. Join us to meet Marcelo Seraphim, Head of the PRI in Brazil. He helps the Brazilian signatory network to advance the country’s sustainable economy. Together we will understand how the PRI has been working to educate, raise awareness and build capacity to help investors mitigate deforestation risks and explore green investment opportunities.
The Securities and Exchange Commission Climate Regulations and the Amazon
In 2017, the Financial Stability Board‘s Task Force for Climate-Related Financial Disclosure (TCFD) released a set of recommendations for climate-related disclosures in financial filings. The framework has since become the de facto global standard for the financial sector to report on climate risks. More recently, the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has proposed rule changes that would require companies to include climate-related disclosures in their registration statements and to submit periodic reports. Should the new SEC financial regulations also cover the forest and land use sectors, and not just industrial emissions? How could such requirements benefit the Amazon? Climate Advisers is a climate think tank and advocacy organization that specializes in forest conservation and other natural climate solutions. Join us to learn about their reactions to the proposed SEC rules and their recommendations for investors during the commentary period closing soon. Together, we will explore why the forest, food and land sectors have an outside impact on climate/deforestation and what the SEC can do to help. We’ll analyze the significance of “Scope 3” (3rd-party supplier) emissions, the benefits of mandatory reporting, options for incorporating nature-based solutions, and finally the opportunities for standardizing sector-specific metrics and strategies. Join the conversation with Matt Piotrowski, Senior Analyst, Climate Advisers.
Amazon Inc. Investing in the Amazon Forest
As part of its commitment to The Climate Pledge — reaching net-zero carbon by 2040 — Amazon has invested in the Agroforestry and Restoration Accelerator, a new nature-based carbon removal initiative. The initiative kicks off in the Brazilian state of Pará, home to 9% of the world’s tropical forest. Pará is facing unprecedented deforestation rates—losing 3,300 acres of forest land every day over the last year. Amazon is working closely with The Nature Conservancy and other local partners to help small-scale farmers restore degraded cattle pastures to native forest and agroforestry. The Accelerator provides farmers with sustainable income through the sales of cocoa and other crops, and will support 3,000 farmers in restoring approximately 20,000 hectares of land—a land mass approximately the size of Seattle—within three years. The goal of the Accelerator is to develop solutions that can rapidly scale from initial investment to millions of hectares of degraded pasture that have the potential for reforestation and agroforestry, which can improve livelihoods in local communities now and for future generations. Join the conversation with Jamey Mulligan, Senior Scientist at Amazon. Reference: The Leaf Coalition.
Investing in Deforestation Free Commodities
Founded in 2012, the Tropical Forest Alliance (TFA) works with governments, corporations, investors, NGOs, indigenous peoples, and allies to prevent deforestation. Launched by the TFA, IFACC (Innovative Finance for the Amazon, Cerrado and Chaco) recently announced commitments of over $3 billion dollars to support deforestation-free cattle and soy production, with plans to disburse $200 million this year. What are the financial mechanisms involved? What technical assistance is offered? How is impact monitored? Join us to explore these questions and meet Danielle Carreira, the Head of Finance Sector Engagement at the TFA. Danielle’s program works to accelerate the transition towards more sustainable land use practices. She is a member of the Expert Review Committee of the World Benchmarking Alliance and is co-author of the reports “Natural Capital Risk Exposure of the Financial Sector in Brazil” (2015) and “The State of Finance for Nature” (2021). Danielle holds an MA in International Finance and a BSc in Economic Sciences. The Tropical Forest Alliance is hosted by the World Economic Forum.
A Company Fixing the Food System for People and Planet
SIMPLi is a modern food company ethically sourcing high quality, single-origin ingredients while tackling fraudulent international supply chains, combating climate change, and improving the livelihoods of farmers and their communities. Launched in 2020 by co-founders Sarela Herrada and Matt Cohen, SIMPLi works directly with international farming communities to consolidate traditionally fragmented sourcing processes into simple, vertical supply chains while helping farmers to get their crops Regenerative Organic Certified (ROC™). SIMPLi’s work has reduced food fraud in the international supply chain by over 1 million pounds and has helped hundreds of farmers receive fair compensation, including cases of 10%+ profit increases. How does SIMPLi work with Indigenous farming communities in the Amazon? What is the process for farming communities to be Regenerative Organic Certified? What are SIMPLi’s plans for accelerating greater access to sustainable food? Join us and meet Sarela and Matt, and to learn.
The Nature Crime Alliance and the Amazon
Challenges to the rule of law limit economic development of the Amazon. Nature crimes in the region include criminal forms of logging, mining, fishing, wildlife trade, and land conversion. As one of the largest illicit economies in the world, nature crime is closely linked to terrorism, corruption, human rights abuses, financial crime, and other threats to peace and security. Set to launch in late 2022, the Nature Crime Alliance will help address these issues. It will be a global, multi-sector network that raises political will, mobilizes financial commitments, and bolsters operational capacity to fight nature crimes and related international criminal activities. Where did the idea come from? Who are the supporters to date? What are the goals? How will the Alliance help the Amazon? Join us to meet Yulia Stange, Senior Manager, Nature Crime Alliance/World Resources Institute, and learn.
Igarape Institute, Sustainable Development and the Rule of Law
Founded in 2010, the Igarape Institute works on security and democracy with a focus on digital, climate, and public interests. Since 2017, the Institute has mapped the scope, scale and dynamics of environmental crime in the Amazon in order to help strengthen the rule of law and activate sustainable development solutions. Their research shows how persistent corruption, illicit financial activities and environmental crime continue to play an important role in deforestation, degrading the environment and impacting the lives and livelihoods of those calling the Amazon home. Join us to meet Igarape co-founder, Ilona Szabó de Carvalho, to discuss these issues and more. As a Brazilian, Ilona is a globally recognized civic entrepreneur, columnist and podcaster. She’s currently a member of the UN Secretary-General’s High-Level Advisory Board on Effective Multilateralism, an affiliate scholar at Princeton University, a former Young Global Leader at the World Economic Forum and a fellow at Columbia University.