South America

Flickr/Trey Ratcliff

 

No other continent is dominated by mountains as much as South America. Most countries in the region are mountainous. Not only do all the major rivers like the Amazon originate in the Andes, but this vast mountain range also shapes landscapes - deserts and rainforests alike.

Some 85 million people live in the Andes, while at least a further 20 million people are also dependent on mountain resources and ecosystem services in the large cities along the Pacific coast of South America. The Andes play a vital part in national economies yet some of the region’s poorest areas are located in the mountains.

While water is one of the key management challenges in the region, other aspects are equally relevant, not least migration from the mountains to urban centers. Traditional knowledge in the region may no longer suffice to cope with extreme climate events, posing a serious risk to the livelihoods of many. To achieve sustainable development, policy action is required regarding the protection of water resources, responsible mining practices, adaptation to climate change practices and mechanisms to generate and use knowledge for sound decision making.

 

Transboundary cooperation to promote sustainable mountain development is increasing as Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador and Peru form a pro-Andes regional mechanism.

Latest news from the region

Towards a regional vision of the Andes

Towards a regional vision of the Andes

13.07.2017

Bogotá, Colombia is hosting a week dedicated to mountains. From 10 to 14 July 2017, Mountains’ Week will offer a space to discuss the strategic importance of paramos and mountain...

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Contest on Andean forests and climate change

Contest on Andean forests and climate change

31.05.2017

The Andean Forests Programme has announced the call for the 2017 Research Grants Fund. The contest aims to promote the generation of scientific information on the impacts and response options...

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Mountains 2018 organizers call for input

Mountains 2018 organizers call for input

03.05.2017

Mountains 2018 is the second in a series of international conferences that will bring together scholars, professionals, policy-makers and other stakeholders from the mountain world. The conference seeks to stimulate...

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IMD events in the Americas

IMD events in the Americas

30.01.2017

Both North and South America marked International Mountain Day (IMD) through various events in Argentina, Bolivia, Canada, Colombia, Costa Rica, Peru and the United States. The National Mountain Committee of...

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Events in the region

International Congress on Climate Change and its Impacts

International Congress on Climate Change and its Impacts

Venue: Huaraz, Peru
From: 29.11.2017 to: 01.12.2017

Evidence shows that Earth’s climate is rapidly changing and its impacts are affecting the whole planet. Nonetheless, the mechanisms and processes of such changes, as well as the planet´s future...

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8th International Meeting of Rural Andean Peoples

8th International Meeting of Rural Andean Peoples

Venue: San Pedro de Atacama, Chile
From: 12.10.2017 to: 15.10.2017

The eighth International Meeting of Rural Andean Peoples will be held in San Pedro De Atacama, Chile on 12-15 October 2017. Organized by the village of Lickanantay, Red...

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International Congress of Highlands and Mountain Ecosystems

International Congress of Highlands and Mountain Ecosystems

Venue: Bogotá, Colombia
From: 12.07.2017 to: 14.07.2017

On 12-14 July 2017, the International Congress of Highlands and Mountain Ecosystems, "Towards a regional vision of the Andes mountains", will be held in Bogotá, Colombia. The Congress will be...

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International Glacier and Mountain Ecosystems Forum

International Glacier and Mountain Ecosystems Forum

Venue: Huaraz, Ancash, Peru
From: 10.08.2016 to: 13.08.2016

The International Glacier and Mountain Ecosystems Forum is an event that seeks to exchange experiences and knowledge about glaciers and mountain ecosystems, promoting opportunities for cooperation between public institutions, civil...

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