The Program for Protected Areas of the Amazon (ARPA), a joint venture between the World Wildlife Fund and the Brazilian Ministry of the Environment, has reached the goal of protecting a network of conservation units comprising more than 231,000 square miles in the Amazon River basin, or about 15 percent of the biome’s territory in Brazil.
The program is now present in 117 conservation units—including in national and state parks, ecological stations, biological and sustainable development reserves in the states of Amapá, Amazonas, Maranhão, Mato Grosso, Pará, Rondônia, Roraima and Tocantins—that are home to more than 8,800 species.
ARPA works with local communities to create, expand, strengthen and maintain these units by ensuring resources and promoting sustainable development in the regions. They benefit from goods, projects and service contracts, such as the establishment of councils, management plans, land surveys and inspection, reaching 30 protected areas so far. ARPA is the largest strategy in place on the planet for conservation and sustainable use of tropical forests.