CARACAS, (Tierramérica).- Some 320 iguanas, a threatened species in Venezuela, now are protected in a refuge in the central industrial city of Valencia, the work of an environmentalist couple with the backing of a private company.
When Adolfo and Eleonora Houtmann were able to interest a dye factory in the endeavor, they launched a unique natural sanctuary in the midst of a contaminated industrial zone.
The Houtmanns are known for their efforts benefiting iguanas, which have completely disappeared from some areas where they are hunted for food. Industrial workers have received information about why it is necessary to protect these reptiles.
Adolfo Houtmann says that good news travels fast because dozens of iguanas reached the refuge on their own.
Civil Society Has the Word
SAN JOSE, (Tierramérica).- The World Development Report 2003, published by the World Bank, will include an environmental development and conservation proposal drawn up by indigenous and ethnic leaders, academics and civil society representatives from throughout Latin America who gathered last week in Costa Rica.
The World Bank will present the report during the United Nations World Summit on Sustainable Development, slated for Aug 26-Sep 4 in the South African city of Johannesburg.
The initiative drafted by 28 delegates on Apr 22 serves as a contribution to the global debate on economic growth and sustainability, the Bank’s civil society coordinator, William Reuben, told Tierramérica.
To comment on the report, connect yourself to www.worldbank.org and enter "wdr 2003" in the search window.
Recycling Educates and Pays
RIO DE JANEIRO, (Tierramérica).- The environmental education project of Brazil’s Friends of the Environment, which is based on recycling efforts, improved the grades of 380 children last year in five rural schools of the Itabuna municipality, in the northeastern state of Bahia, and created new sources of income for their families.
The authorities plan to expand the project this year to 2,600 students in 40 rural schools and several urban schools in this municipality of 200,000 inhabitants, coordinator Sumara Midlej Café told Tierramérica.
Using glass containers, paper, and plastic bags, children make baskets, rugs, cleaning items and decorations that they then sell in the city. These activities are utilized to introduce math lessons and other topics.
The families in the region, hit by a plague that devastated the local cacao harvest, are also taking part in the program, which is providing them with a new source of income. *Source: Inter Press Service.
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