Deforestation & colonization of Indigenous Ashaninka Territory, Peru

The Ashaninka have been resisting the colonization of their territory for centuries but the rainforest frontier keeps moving forward. It was first for timber but it is also now for plantations.


Description

The Ashaninka people are the largest indigenous group of the central Peruvian Amazon region. In the 1980s decade they suffered the impacts of the violent conflicts between the Shining Path (the rebel Maoist guerilla group Sendero Luminoso) and the governmental troops. It has been estimated that 10% of the Ashaninka population was killed due to these confrontations in which they were not involved. The Forestry Act was the subject of fierce protests during its discussion and approval. Still, it came into force. And in 2003, the first public auction of forest concessions were granted in the Ucayali region, located in the Central Forest in the Amazonian part of the eastern Andean foothills in Peru. This process, managed by the Amazonian Forest Consortium, completely ignored any prior consultation with the local indigenous peoples. Trees cutting in Ashaninka territory caused deforestation, forced displacement, deteriorated indigenous’ livelihoods as well as it was the main cause of the conflict and violence that spread through the region. In September 2014, four Ashaninka leaders were killed by illegal loggers. The murders remained unpunished. The AIDESEP continues denouncing the inadequacy between the State’s pretended good intentions as with the signature of an agreement with Norway and Germany in 2014 aiming to reduce deforestation and the actual national policies favoring the extension of plantations, as for instance of palm oil. The Ashaninka people are also endangered by other projects. In 2010, as the result of an energy agreement with Brazil, the Peruvian national government plans ahead the construction of two dams on the rivers Ene and Tambo. The woman Ruth Buendía Mestoquiari, President of CARE, received the Goldman Environmental Price in 2014 for her struggle and leadership. Another conflict description on the Atlas gives specific input about the Ashaninka peoples’ mobilization against the mega-dams. 

Basic Data
NameDeforestation & colonization of Indigenous Ashaninka Territory, Peru
CountryPeru
ProvinceAtalaya Province (Ucayali Region)
Accuracy of LocationHIGH local level
Source of Conflict
Type of Conflict (1st level)Biomass and Land Conflicts (Forests, Agriculture and Livestock Management)
Type of Conflict (2nd level)Deforestation
Plantation conflicts (incl. Pulp
Logging and non timber extraction
Specific CommoditiesCellulose
Land
Project Details and Actors
Project DetailsIn 2003, four Spanish-Peruvian companies were granted a 40 year concession for the exploitation of 40,000 hectares of forest. Soon after they made a consortium that allowed them to log more than 180,000 hectares of forest.
Project Area (in hectares)182414
Type of PopulationRural
Potential Affected Population 99,117
Start Date2000
Company Names or State EnterprisesPartes y Piezas SAC from Peru
SAC-Anaconda from Peru
SAFI Peru from Peru
SAC-Shihuahuaco from Peru
CFA from Spain
Relevant government actorsInstituto Nacional de Recursos Naturales (INRENA) - Peru, Government of Peru, Minitry of Economy and Finance - Peru
Environmental justice organisations and other supportersLa Comunidad Asháninka Marankiari Bajo (CIAMB) - Peru, Organización Indígena de la Región Atalaya (OIRA) - Peru, Asociacion Interetnica de Desarrollo de la Selva Peruana (AIDESEP) - Peru, Forest People Programme - UK, World Movement for Tropical Forests
The Conflict and the Mobilization
Intensity of Conflict (at highest level)HIGH (widespread, mass mobilization, violence, arrests, etc...)
When did the mobilization beginPREVENTIVE resistance (precautionary phase)
Groups MobilizingIndigenous groups or traditional communities
International ejos
Local ejos
Neighbours/citizens/communities
Social movements
Ethnically/racially discriminated groups
Forms of MobilizationInvolvement of national and international NGOs
Official complaint letters and petitions
Public campaigns
Street protest/marches
Impacts
Environmental ImpactsVisible: Biodiversity loss (wildlife, agro-diversity), Loss of landscape/aesthetic degradation, Deforestation and loss of vegetation cover
Potential: Air pollution, Food insecurity (crop damage), Global warming, Noise pollution, Soil contamination, Soil erosion, Surface water pollution / Decreasing water (physico-chemical, biological) quality, Groundwater pollution or depletion
Health ImpactsVisible: Accidents, Malnutrition, Deaths
Socio-economic ImpactsVisible: Increase in Corruption/Co-optation of different actors, Displacement, Lack of work security, labour absenteeism, firings, unemployment, Loss of livelihood, Loss of traditional knowledge/practices/cultures, Violations of human rights, Land dispossession, Loss of landscape/sense of place, Increase in violence and crime, Militarization and increased police presence
Outcome
Project StatusIn operation
Pathways for conflict outcome / responseDeaths
Land demarcation
Migration/displacement
Strengthening of participation
Development of AlternativesThe stop of the legal and illegal timber exploitation, the retrieve of the lands to their initial owners, and the restoration of the area. Granting the indigenous peoples with property title registration.
Do you consider this as a success?No
Why? Explain briefly.Timber exploitation and plantations' multiplication continues to be the main activity in the area and there is a high amount of illegal logging.
Sources and Materials
Legislations

Article 80, 2004, of the World Rainforest Movement

Forestry Law 27 308, July 2000

References

El trabajo forzoso en la extraccion de la madera en la Amazonia Peruana. Eduardo Bedoya, 2004.
[click to view]

Indigenous peoples. Their forests, struggles and rights. World Rainforest Movement, 2005
[click to view]

La deforestacion evitada y los derechos de los Pueblos Indigenas y las comunidades locales. Forest People Programme, 2007
[click to view]

Asuntos Indigenas 4/06, Explotacion Forestal y Pueblos Indgenas. Iwgia, 2006
[click to view]

Los Ashaninka, Base de Datos de pueblos indigenas u originarios, Ministerio de Cultura del Peru
[click to view]

Liberation Through Land Rights in the Peruvian Amazon, P. García Hierro, S. Hvalkof, A. Gray, IWGIA Document n.90, 1998
[click to view]

Peru - Declaration concerning the threat of the Pakitzapango Dam by the Ashaninka communities of the Ene Valley, Forest Peoples Programme, 26/04/2009
[click to view]

Haciendo visible lo invisible - Perspectivas indígenas sobre la deforestación en la Amazonía peruana, AIDESEP & Forest Peoples Programme, Noviembre 2014
[click to view]

Gobernanza Forestal y Derechos Indígenas: claves para el éxito de la nueva Alianza Forestal entre Perú, Alemania y Noruega, Comunicado de prensa, 23/09/2014
[click to view]

Links

Contrarrestar la explotación maderera es una de las preocupaciones asháninkas, Info Region, 25/10/2011
[click to view]

4 Asháninka assassinated in the community of Saweto – Ucayali, AIDESEP, 14/09/2014
[click to view]

Deforestation in Peru: Building a dramatic future in the Amazon and the Andean Region, Coha, 28/09/2015
[click to view]

PERU: Lideresa asháninka es elegida heroína ambiental a nivel mundial, 04/2014
[click to view]

The Goldman Envrironmental Price, Ruth Buendía, 2014
[click to view]

Taladores ilegales asesinaron a líderes asháninkas, afirma Defensoría, RPP Noticias, 10/09/2014
[click to view]

Caso de asesinato de Ashaninkas esta paralizado por falta de presupuesto, Diario16, 24/10/2014
[click to view]

Qué se juega en el acuerdo energético Perú-Brasil, M. Salazar, IPS, 17/06/2010
[click to view]

La fiebre energética de Brasil inundará la selva peruana de megahidroeléctricas, El Mundo.es, 17/06/2010
[click to view]

Perú - Ministerio de Cultura
[click to view]

Swissinfo - Humala crea Parque Nacional para protegerlo del narcotráfico y tala ilegal
[click to view]

CLAES, Ambiental.net - El mayor decomiso de madera ilegal de la Amazonia peruana

Terra - Indígenas de Perú siguen amenazados por presuntos asesinos de sus líderes

23 ENE
[click to view]

Peru Promotes Oil Palm Expansion Despite Devastating Consequences for Indigenous Peoples & Amazon, EIA, 14/10/2015
[click to view]

Forest Governance and Indigenous Rights Key to Success of New Peru, Germany, Norway Partnership, EIA, 23/09/2014
[click to view]

Media Links

Territorio Ashaninka, Eaf Producions, 10/06/2015
[click to view]

Asháninka, treinta años de resistencia indígena en Perú por conservar la tierra, RTVE, 01/11/2013
[click to view]

Asháninkas en defensa de su territori, Eaf Producions, 05/05/2009
[click to view]

Geographical location of Asháninka Territory
[click to view]

CIAMB PERU, Comunidad Asháninka Marankiari Bajo, Youtube Page
[click to view]

Other Documents

Asháninka Marankiari Bajo Community (CIAMB) Source: http://esmiperu.blogspot.com.es/
[click to view]

Ashaninka women in Peruvian Amazon forest http://latincorrespondent.com / Rodrigo Abd
[click to view]

Meta Information
ContributorLucie Greyl
Last update22/02/2016
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