Cuzco, Peru, Oct 23 (EFE) – Sharing trends in environmental finance for the conservation and restoration of biodiversity is the goal of the 25th International Congress of the Environmental Funds Network of Latin America and the Caribbean (RedLAC). The event, which opened on Monday in Cuzco, will compile regional proposals for the upcoming United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP 28).
“We’re here to collaboratively find innovative solutions to face all the challenges arising from climate change. In this context, environmental financing becomes a fundamental pillar to address these challenges,” said Jorge Oviedo, president of RedLAC and executive director of El Salvador’s Environmental Investment Fund (FIAES), in his opening remarks.
Over four days, the ancient Inca capital will host more than 350 experts from 35 countries spanning Latin America, the Caribbean, Africa, and Europe. They will discuss innovative financial mechanisms that enable the participation of public, private, and civil society stakeholders for the benefit of the environment.
“In this gathering, we aim to gain knowledge that will help us support the preservation of ecosystems and foster more resilient communities,” Oviedo said of the congress, organized by Profonanpe, Peru’s environmental fund, alongside RedLAC and FIAES.
Speaking to a packed auditorium, Oviedo referenced the Inca legend of Mama Cocha, the mother of waters and daughter of the Sun and Moon, symbolizing the spirit of water and nature protection, ensuring communities live in harmony with their environment.
“We share this sacred value of water and natural resources. Just like Mama Cocha, at RedLAC we work to promote harmony and cooperation among people and organizations in Latin America, the Caribbean, and their inhabitants,” the organization’s president said, representing a network spanning 27 countries.
Oviedo further highlighted that humanity is at a “very critical juncture in the planet’s history.” We no longer live in the era of global warming but are entering global boiling, leading to threatening climate variability, an “unprecedented” loss of biodiversity, and ecosystem degradation.
Thus, RedLAC’s commitment “is more relevant today than ever,” serving as a bridge to connect communities with various organizations to enhance community life and regional sustainability.
“Environmental funds under RedLAC play a crucial role in mobilizing financial resources for these issues. Our role involves innovative institutional arrangements that allow us to drive powerful, far-reaching initiatives,” Oviedo said.
EXCHANGE OF EXPERIENCES
“The meeting will be an exchange of experiences and knowledge, aiming to create new alliances and cooperative environments to conserve biodiversity and affirm sustainable development in our territory,” remarked Luis Pantoja, provincial mayor of Cuzco.
Pantoja added that the negative impacts of climate change and environmental pollution are intensifying, affecting the quality of life for many. He stressed the importance of forming partnerships with academia, financial players, international cooperation agencies, and other stakeholders.
Profonanpe’s executive director, Anton Willems, posited that the upcoming days will be learning opportunities, sharing varied experiences to formulate work agendas that continue to emphasize the intrinsic importance of biodiversity conservation and environmental care in daily life. EFE