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Grassland management and wetland conservation in the Nor Yauyos-Cochas Landscape Reserve

Peru Nor Yauyos-Cochas Landscape Reserve, Junín Region

Local communities in the Nor Yauyos-Cochas Landscape Reserve who maintain traditional ways of living in harmony with nature, have engaged with the Mountain Ecosystems-based Adaptation program implemented by the UNDP and IUCN to better manage grasslands and local watersheds.

The Mountain Ecosystem-based Adaptation program (EbA) is an initiative led by the United Nations Development Programme and the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources. In Peru, the programme is run by the Ministry of Environment and is implemented in the Nor Yauyos-Cochas Landscape Reserve, with support from the National Service for Protected Natural Areas. The objective of the project is to reduce the vulnerability of mountain ecosystems in the Nor Yauyos-Cochas Landscape Reserve to climate change. The Nor Yauyos-Cochas Landscape Reserve is an area of extremely high conservation value in the high Andean region. The EbA program focused on three communities in particular: Canchayllo (900 inhabitants; 7,650 hectares), Miraflores (250 inhabitants; 13,031 hectares), and Tanta (600 inhabitants). The main livelihood for all communities is either livestock or cattle farming although they also practice small-scale cultivated agriculture. Local communities maintain ancestral ways of living in harmony with nature. As part of the EbA program, community members have introduced approaches to communal management of native grasslands, with a particular emphasis on the management of vicuñas, a wild relative of the llama. The expansion and conservation of wetlands and restoration of water channels and reservoirs to support micro-watersheds was another major tenet of the project. For example, a natural water reservoir dam was restored to reduce water filtration and ensure adequate water supply during the dry season. Furthermore, in Miraflores, a 5-hectare protection zone was enlarged encircling an upper micro-watershed, limiting cattle entry into the area. The interventions have all focused on participatory and community-based management which has improved social cohesion and reduced conflict over resources among community members.

Case effectiveness on

Climate change

Mitigation: Not reported
Adaptation: Positive

The project has reportedly led to the improved management of water from the upper watershed, reducing its scarcity. Wetlands have reportedly been recovered to a large extent, reducing vulnerability to climate change. Vulnerability to drought and the risk of dry season fires have both reportedly been reduced. The interventions have also led to increases in livestock and agricultural productivity.

Ecosystem health

Ecological effect: Not reported

Socioeconomic outcomes

The improved management of communal lands has reportedly led to a reduction in conflict over resources. Sustainable grassland management has reportedly resulted in better pasture and hence healthier livestock products.

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Wetlands in the distance and lakes

Intervention type

  • Management
  • Protection
Targets poor/disadvantaged
Conducted at landscape scale

Ecosystem type

  • Tropical & subtropical grasslands
  • Wetlands

Climate change impacts addressed

  • Reduced water availability

Instigators

  • International conservation/environment organization
  • Other
  • National government/agency
  • Research institutions

Societal challenges

  • Biodiversity conservation
  • Climate change adaptation
  • Water security

Literature info

  • Grey literature
Case methodology not reported

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