SNAPP: Amazon Waters- Balancing infrastructure development and conservation of waters, wetlands and fisheries

Principal Investigator(s): 

Michael Goulding and Mariana Varese

The Amazon Basin is the largest river system in the world. The Western Amazon contains the largest areas of river and stream channels, flooded forests and floodplain lakes in the basin — wetlands critical to food provision and drinking water for millions of people as well as to subsistence and commercial fisheries. How might conservation of waters and wetlands and local food security and economies dependent on them be balanced with the large-scale infrastructure development already underway, such as roads and expanding agricultural frontiers and hydrocarbon exploitation, as well as planned dams needed to support the growing urban populations?

The SNAPP Amazon Waters Working Group will promote integrated river basin management and planning informed by science and “translated” into a language and format usable by decision-makers. This should provide a transnational framework to confront upstream and downstream negative impacts on waters, wetlands and sub-basins and how they might be mitigated in the western Amazon.

The working group recently published major findings regarding ecosystem connectivity of the Amazon River to the Andes by way of goliath catfish migrations. You can read more about their research in their recent publication in Scientific Reports - Nature.

This project is supported by the Science for Nature and People Partnership (SNAPP), generously funded through founding grants by Shirley and Harry Hagey, Steve and Roberta Denning, Seth Neiman, Angela Nomellini and Ken Olivier, the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, Ward W. and Priscilla B. Woods, and the David and Lucile Packard Foundation.

More information for project participants Visit the SNAPP website