Just as the final touches are being put on the new reserve funded by World Land Trust (WLT) in Misiones, malicious rumours are trying to scupper it, with no apparent benefits to anyone, least of all the Guarani Indian Communities who live there.
The property is known as Lote Ocho (Lot 8) and forms the first stage in the Emerald Green Corridor which WLT’s partners in Argentina are creating between Brazil and the Esmeraldas Provincial Park, within the Yaboti Biosphere reserve.
Lot 8 is being divided, so that the title deed of the largest part can belong to the Guarani Indian Communities. But under Argentine law, there has to be an access route to any property, and this means creating a track of some 800m.
Meanwhile rumours are now flying around that a major asphalt highway is being built with government funding. Totally untrue. But rumours like this can cause major setbacks to conservation, and one can only assume that they are politically motivated.
WLT itself is not directly involved in any of this – it’s our policy to operate only through local NGOs, and they must have a free hand, and be independent of interference from WLT. But equally, we would never fund an organisation that would do anything like building even a dirt road, without taking all the environmental issues into account.
One of the downsides of the internet, is how easy it is for scurrilous information to be widely disseminated. So what is the truth? The truth is that an access track of some 800m will be created. The surface has yet to be decided, but rest assured it will be whatever causes the least environmental impact.