Forest Saved With Mobiles

Following our report of the campaign in Argentina by Greenpeace to save the Pizarro Reserve, the area has been declared a national reserve.

Following our report of the campaign in Argentina by Greenpeace to save the Pizarro Reserve, the area has been declared a national reserve.

“After 20 months of direct actions and strong campaign using mobiles we WON the campaign to save the Pizarro Reserve, one of the most beatiful forests that we have in Argentina” said Oscar Soria, Director de Comunicación, Greenpeace Argentina.


“This was our first experiment using mobiles in this campaign and it was a success. Our database of mobiles has been growing in the last three weeks and we have now more than 1.500 “movilactivistas (mobileactivists)” said Soria.

Not one hectare more


Through an agreement by the National Park Administration and the Salta provincial government, the Pizarro nature reserve, which in an unprecedented move had been stripped of its legal status as a protected area last year and seen part of its territory auctioned off to agribusiness firms, recovered its protected status Friday.


Under the accord, the Wichí indigenous group living in the reserve will be granted community title deeds to their lands.


The conflict broke out in February 2004, when the government of Salta introduced a bill in the provincial legislature to auction off part of the 25,000-hectare Pizarro reserve, which is home to 3,000 peasant farmers and Wichís. The legislators approved the bill and ordered the auction to go ahead.

Environmental, social and religious groups, as well as academic institutions, backed the local residents’ protests against the law that declassified the area as a nature reserve, a status it had been given by a 1995 provincial law to protect the 25,000- hectare area.


In June 2004, despite the protests, the government began to auction off the land to large agribusiness firms, which planned to clear the forests to plant soybeans, now the main export crop grown by large landholders and exporters in Argentina since the 1990s.

Greenpeace set up a camp in Pizarro and held constant protests and demonstrations along with the local residents in an attempt to keep the bulldozers from clearing the land.

Of the 22,000 hectares that were recovered, 2,000 will be set aside for the common use of the Wichí indigenous community, which depends on hunting and the gathering of food in the forests for a living. In addition, 800 hectares will be granted as community property through a collective land title.

More here at Greenpeace

Our original report:
Greenpeace Uses SMS To Monitors Forest Destruction