CSF brings together journalists and conservation experts at forum in Brasilia

On November 12th, in Brasília, Brazil, 30 journalists from the Amazonian regional media as well as from the national and international outlets attended an infrastructure-focused workshop organized by CSF-Brasil. These professionals hailed from various organizations including O Eco, IPAM, IMAZON, WWF, and TNC. John Lyons of the Wall Street Journal, Wilson Cabral of Instituto Tecnológico de Aeronáutica, and Paul E. Little, anthropologist and infrastructure expert, were also in attendance. Speakers shared information about the impacts of infrastructure projects on ecosystem services in the Amazon. The event provided a forum to discuss infrastructure project planning as well as key environmental, social, economic and legal issues that need to be understood by society.

CSF president John Reid presented information on how to to measure the financial viability of infrastructure projects considering external costs to society. Pedro Bara, Green Hydropower Development Strategy leader for the WWF Living Amazon Initiative, shared WWF’s perspective on the need to consider the cumulative impacts of hydropower plants in the Amazon basin, and incorporate conservation planning into decision making. Ane Alencar from IPAM discussed past and upcoming Brazilian infrastructure development plans and the need to update them considering their potential impacts on ecosystem services. Paulo Barreto from Imazon shared results from a study on how the Belo Monte dam raised deforestation rates in the region. John Lyons, Wall Street Journal correspondent in Brazil and Eduardo Pegurier from the Brazilian website O Eco presented their perspective on the challenges and opportunities for media coverage in the Amazon.

This event was organized by CSF-Brasil and through support from the Building Understanding in Infrastructure and Landscape Development (BUILD) Project, which is made possible by the support of the American People through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, as well as from Fundación Avina and the Skoll Foundation.