The Yasuní National Park in the Ecuadorian Amazon is one of the most bio-diverse place on the planet. It is home to many indigenous people including some who voluntarily maintain no contact with the outside world. Unfortunately the Yasuní also sits atop between 412 and 920 million barrels of oil and the oil companies are desperate to start drilling.
Yasuní Green Gold is an international campaign born with the support of the people of the Yasuní, with the aim to raise awareness of the region and create a network of people and organisations across the world to support the conservation of the Yasuní and the protection of its indigenous and local people.
In May 2007 Ecuador’s government announced they were prepared to leave the oil in the ground but would need financial and political support from the international community. Yasuni Green Gold want to make sure the proposal goes forward in its best and most representative form, respecting the indigenous people and their human rights, with hope of creating a principal that can be used across the world.
The Yasuní National Park is situated in the Ecuadorian Amazon, predominantly in the province of Francisco de Orellana. In 1989 UNESCO declared the park a Bio-reserve and Cultural Heritage site.
Inhabiting the Yasuní are various different indigenous groups including the Waorani, Shuar and Amazonian Kichwa. Some of these peoples - such as the Tagaeri and Taromenane - still voluntarily maintain no contact with the rest of the world. These warrior-like hunter-gatherers have been living in harmony with nature for centuries.
The Yasuní is one of the most bio-diverse places on the planet. It spans nearly a million hectares and is home to the greatest genetic variety of plants and animals on earth.
It is thought to be a zone that did not freeze during the last ice-age, which began 2 million years ago and lasted up to 10,000 years ago. As a result, it became an island of vegetation where flora and fauna took refuge, survived and eventually re-populated the Amazon.
This explains the abundance of recording-breaking natural treasures constantly being discovered in the Yasuní. For example, the forest it accommodates the largest number of species of trees per hectare in the world. Only one hectare of the Yasuní is home to the same amount of native tree species as the whole of North America. There is also an extraordinary amount of unrecorded bio-diversity.
The Ecuadorian national government has declared 700, 000 hectares of the park legally ‘untouchable’ meaning that the area should be protected from any activity which may negatively effect the bio or cultural diversity of the region.
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