Program of Brazil-FAO International Cooperation
©FAO photo / FAO

Strengthening Agro-Environmental Policies in Latin America and the Caribbean

Under the Brazil-FAO Program for International Cooperation, the project "Strengthening agro-environmental policies in countries of Latin America and the Caribbean through dialogue and exchange of national experiences" has been operating since the year 2012, through the FAO Regional Office for Latin America and the Caribbean, associated with the Ministry of Environment and the Brazilian Cooperation Agency of the Government of Brazil. It aims to contribute to the strengthening of agro-environmental public policies as a tool for reducing rural poverty and food insecurity, in the context of climate change in the countries of the region.

The project was based on national diagnostic studies and the selection of cases of exemplary policies, through which convergences were evaluated regarding environmental integration by the productive sectors, who faced the challenge of adapting the goals of economic growth to the needs of conservation of natural resources, equity and social justice, food security and the promotion of environmental and human health. An initial stage was carried out in Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Mexico and Nicaragua, and later in Costa Rica, Cuba, Panama, and Paraguay, with the addition of these new countries.

As a result of these national diagnostic studies of agro-environmental policies and lessons learned, as well as through an extensive process of dialogue in the countries and at the regional level, the Voluntary Guidelines for Agro-Environmental Policies in Latin America and the Caribbean were established and later published in 2016.

The aim of the Guidelines is to provide assistance to the States to improve their policies under an agro-environmental approach linking territory, environment and economy in a more integrated and harmonious manner, through interaction with the different social partners; in order to move towards sustainable development and achieving food and nutrition security, in light of a scenario of global change.

The process of dissemination of the Voluntary Guidelines is currently underway, along with the development of a proposal of indicators for agro-environmental policies in Latin America and the Caribbean.

National Studies on Agro-environmental Policies

Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama and Paraguay have systematized various productive policy tools, incorporating environmental variables that were considered successful. The studies have been discussed in various workshops and forums of cross-sectoral dialogue at the national and regional levels, with the participation of representatives from the governments, private sector, community organizations, civil associations, research organizations and academia; obtaining conclusions, recommendations and lessons learned in a consensual manner.

Study on Agro-environmental Policies in Brazil  

It presents agro-environmental policies in the country, based on issues such as current conditions, the beneficiaries of the policies, policy operations and some results.


Study on Agro-environmental Policies in Chile  
Documents, systematizes and analyzes the effect of policies implemented in the country, including an analysis of the basic pillars of the agroforestry sector regulation, the environmental regulatory framework and the government institutions which regulate the sector.


Study on Agro-environmental Policies in Colombia  
From the perspective of policies and experiences, it addresses the incorporation of principles of food security and sovereignty, environmental conservation, climate change, sustainability, the promotion of agriculture- organic or ecological- and improving the welfare of the population.


Study on Agro-environmental Policies in Mexico
Analyzes four agro-environmental programs of the Secretariat of Agriculture, Livestock, Rural Development, Fisheries and Food (SAGARPA); assessing their potential as agro-environmental or sustainable public policies for the country.


Study on Agro-environmental Policies in Nicaragua
Systematizes the experience of implementing public policies, which have initiated the process of promoting ecological and organic agriculture using an agro-environmental approach, the systematization of seven agro-ecological farms and agro-ecological knowledge management.


Study on Agro-environmental Policies in Costa Rica   

It highlights several public policy tools with an agro-environmental approach, which have been developed and chosen for their achievements. It also presents the sectoral, institutional and regulatory framework for the agroforestry and agro-environmental sectors.


Study on Agro-environmental Policies in Cuba

As a result of a broad participatory process, the study systematizes and analyzes cases of agro-environmental policies, identifies challenges to be addressed and presents the structure, institutional and regulatory framework of the agroforestry sector.


Study on Agro-environmental Policies in Panama

It presents the regulatory and institutional framework of the environmental and agricultural sectors, as well as highlights three experiences of public policy tools that were successful in incorporating an agro-environmental approach.


Study on Agro-environmental Policies in Paraguay

Describes the conceptual, legal and institutional framework of the agricultural and environmental sectors, highlighting agro-environmental public policies and strategic plans that have been developed. Applies guidelines of agro-environmental policies of the consultation processes carried out.

Directrices voluntarias para políticas agroambientales en América Latina y el Caribe

The document on voluntary guidelines for agro-environmental policies is primarily aimed at those responsible for defining and implementing public policies in the countries of Latin America and the Caribbean; with an impact on agriculture, forestry, fisheries and aquaculture. It is the result of an intense process of consultations and discussions carried out with the participating countries within the scope of the Project and aims to contribute to the reduction of food insecurity, rural poverty and the degradation of ecosystems in the context of climate change; through a set of principles and strategic guidelines to guide the implementation of sectoral actions and governance systems that strengthen local ownership and social participation. The Guidelines are presented as an instrumental framework which seeks to contribute to the Sustainable Development Goals (ODS) and the goals of the Agenda 2030 of the United Nations.