SS 15 - Earth Stewardship in Latin America: Challenges and Opportunities

Tuesday, August 9, 2011: 8:00 PM-10:00 PM
5, Austin Convention Center
Organizer: Juan J. Armesto
Co-organizers: Mimi E. Lam , Daniel Stanton and Ricardo Rozzi
Speakers: Mary E. Power , Jon P. Rodriguez and Mauricio Quesada
This Special Session, co-organized by the South American Chapter with the TEK Section and the Mexican Chapter, is intended to generate an open debate among practicing ecologists and students from the Americas about the Earth’s Stewardship initiative. Latin American economies are largely based on massive use of natural resources from managed or wild ecosystems, which are in turn home to a major portion of global biodiversity. Institutional capacity for management and study of these ecosystems is highly variable across the region and often poorly developed. We propose to discuss the long-term sustainability of this development model within the context of planetary stewardship, and ask how can we improve our ability to address these challenges, considering future scenarios of climate change, loss of biodiversity, population pressures, and energy acquisition. Introductory presentations of views on the subject from former ESA President Mary Power, Mauricio Quesada (Mexican Chapter President) and South American ecologists Jon Paul Rodriguez and Ricardo Rozzi, with experience in social aspects and education, will motivate the ensuing roundtable discussion, featuring representatives of currently active Latin American ecological societies. We expect that the year following the Special Session, we will (a) communicate the conclusions from the roundtable in a multi-authored paper in a broad impact ESA journal and a South American ecology journal, (b) use Earth's Stewardship tasks defined at the roundtable for the long-term planning of Chapter and Section activities, (c) promote the inclusion of Earth Stewardship goals within the agendas of the regional ecological societies from Latin America.
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