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The Latin America of opportunities: employment and sustainability

The region can grow economically and, in the same way, take care of the environment.

View of a landscape with animals

The governments of countries around the world have had to create plans to reactivate the economy and this has generated controversy at the environmental level. Photo: Unsplash

LatinAmerican Post | Vanesa López Romero

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Leer en español: Latinoamérica de oportunidades: empleo y sostenibilidad

The pandemic has meant an economic crisis around the world. In the midst of this, several governments have had to create plans to reactivate the economy and this has generated controversy in environmental matters because many of the proposals are little or not sustainable at all.

On the verge of three environmental crises (climate change, pollution and loss of biodiversity), organizations have reiterated the importance of solutions being sustainable , in order to turn the economy around and make it circular again. That is to say, that it is aware of the natural resources that we have, since the lack of them would directly affect all of us, specially the most vulnerable.

Latin America of opportunities

Recently, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) presented a report in which 7 sustainable agriculture projects carried out in the region were analyzed. These are not only sustainable, but have also been shown to create new job opportunities . These were implemented in Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Guatemala, Mexico, Uruguay, and the Caribbean.

According to the report, "prosperous, inclusive, sustainable, low-emission and climate-resilient agriculture" is possible in the Latin American region. This gives a new light of hope for the reactivation of the post-pandemic economy and for the environmental care that is being fought for in the region.

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The projects are aligned with the Sustainable Development Goals and respond to the need to implement measures that take care of the environment, people and reduce the chances of suffering a global food crisis . FAO insists on the need for these cases to be taken as an example so that similar projects are implemented in the rest of the region and that, above all, they are consistent.

Ecuador: Climate-Smart Livestock

It is a project focused on livestock. According to the publication, in Ecuador, this economic industry represents 43% of greenhouse gas emissions. This project was implemented in more than 300 farms in the country and allowed more than a thousand farmers to increase their milk production while helping "to conserve the soil, strengthen the adaptive capacity to climate change and lower emissions from the sector ."

In total, the project avoided 24,000 tons of greenhouse gases .

Mexico: clean energy

The country is committed to reduce its emissions by 22% by 2030. 12% of emissions are represented by the agricultural sector . In that vein, the government implemented "a plan to promote efficient and low-emission technologies in agriculture."

The project resulted in " 1,842 businesses in the agriculture sector completing."

Guatemala and Colombia: Community Forest Management

This project has made it possible to promote forest conservation while generating employment , carrying out community activities and achieving the goal of a sustainable and clean economy.

According to the report, in " Guatemala, more than 1,200 families participated in 350,000 hectares of the Maya Biosphere Reserve in Petén, while in Colombia 25 communities and two logging associations participated ."

Uruguay: pesticide management

In this project, they worked with more than 2,000 Uruguayan technicians and producers in order to change practices and opt for alternatives for the use of chemicals that put the community and the environment at risk.

"The plan was based on the development of new technologies, greater traceability and improved capacities, with an emphasis on communication and agreements with the stakeholders involved," the report states.

Trinidad and Tobago, and Brazil: change of mentality in fisheries

Fishing shrimp generate a lot of employment, but this practice captures species that should not be caught and damages sensitive seabed habitats . This project aimed to reduce the negative effects of this practice by developing adapted nets that use technology to reduce bycatch.

Chile: clean production

The Clean Production Agreements aim to "voluntarily improve productive practices in the Chilean economy." In this case, it allowed 340 members of Chilean farming to increase their economic benefits while reducing their carbon footprint.

Colombia: Agricultural Technical Tables

These aim for producers to reduce their climatic risks. In this case, it was achieved that " a banana union in Magdalena and La Guajira reduced its losses due to climatic effects by 15% and its use of fertilizers per hectare by 25% ."