The Long and Winding Road: Mitigating the Impact of the Interoceanic Highway in Peru’s Amazonian Interior

Camino Verde volunteer and intern Samuel Goodman offers this insightful overview of one of the primary threats facing the Madre de Dios region's wondrous biodiversity: the Interoceanic Highway.

The Long and Winding Road: Mitigating the Impact of the Interoceanic Highway in Peru’s Amazonian Interior

Introduction

In December 2004, Presidents Alejandro Toledo of Peru and Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva of Brazil reached an agreement to construct the 1,600-mile Interoceanic Highway that would connect the two countries. (1)  The Interoceanic Highway crosses through formidable Andean and Amazonian terrain to form a direct connection between Peru’s Pacific ports and Brazil’s Atlantic coast. The completion of the Interoceanic Highway stands to have a substantial economic impact on both a regional and global scale.  However, the highway cuts directly through tropical rainforest, threatening to fragment fragile ecosystems, increase deforestation rates, and threaten the livelihoods of indigenous tribes in the region.  Of particular concern is the MAP region, which consists of the Peruvian department of Madre de Dios, the Brazilian state of Acre and the Bolivian department of Pando. (2)  This region lies in the heart of the Amazonian River Basin and is located at the epicenter of controversy over the construction of the Interoceanic Highway.

Most of the controversy surrounding the construction of the Interoceanic Highway has risen from environmental concerns and fears that the highway will compromise indigenous groups’ rights. In response to criticism over the construction of the Interoceanic Highway, former Peruvian President Alejandro Toledo declared, “To make an omelet, you have to break some eggs.” (3)  Despite the threats that the highway imposes, Peruvian and Brazilian governments agreed to prioritize economic growth over environmental concerns and build the road.

With the highway now open for business, environmentalists, in recent years, have focused on mitigation strategies to reduce environmental degradation and protect the rights of indigenous groups.  In order to reduce the road’s impact, the Peruvian and Brazilian governments must promote better land-use practices and enhance conservation efforts for protected areas and indigenous reserves.

The purpose of this paper is to look at whether the environmental and social costs of constructing the Interoceanic Highway have the potential to offset the economic benefits the road brings as well as to examine strategies for mitigating the road’s impact in the Peruvian Amazon Basin.  This paper begins with a brief overview of the history behind the construction of the Interoceanic Highway.  The historical background is followed by an analysis of the economic impact the highway will have for its key stakeholders.  In addition, the paper provides an examination of demographic shifts resulting from the road’s development in the Amazon Basin.   This is followed by a general assessment of the environmental impact of highways as well as a more in-depth analysis of the effects of ecosystem fragmentation, deforestation, gold mining and issues affecting indigenous communities that have resulted from the development of the Interoceanic Highway.  The paper concludes with a briefing of strategies to minimize the environmental and social costs associated with the development of the Interoceanic Highway.

History

Talks between the Peruvian and Brazilian governments to link Peru’s ports with Brazil’s interior began in the early 1960s. (4)  These talks led to an agreement between the two nations in 1979 to construct a highway linking the two nations. (5)  Plans to construct the Interoceanic Highway were formalized in December 2004 and the highway was opened in 2011 when the Continental Bridge was completed. The inauguration of the Continental Bridge in Peru meant that the 2.75-billion dollar dream had become a reality. (6)

The Continental Bridge, located in the heart of the MAP region, is a 722-meter bridge spanning the Madre de Dios River in Peru, which is located adjacent to the city of Puerto Maldonado. (7)  The construction of the bridge was one of the most contested pieces of the Interoceanic Highway.   The bridge is located just 15 kilometers from the Tambopata Reserve Zone and is threatening “one of the Amazon’s richest biodiversity hotspots.” (8)  Furthermore, the bridge stands to increase traffic in Puerto Maldonado and perpetuate environmentally destructive practices around the city such as illegal gold mining and logging.

Economic Impact

While north-south highways spanning South America are well established, east-west routes linking the Atlantic and Pacific are relatively underdeveloped.   The construction of the Interoceanic Highway in recent years has been likened to the development of the Pan-American Highway in the 20th Century.  As South American economies continue to develop, infrastructure projects linking remote areas in the region are becoming more common.  Chile, for example, is working on its own road to Brazil that will be significantly shorter than the Interoceanic Highway. (9)  Peru and Brazil are expected to benefit considerably from the construction of the highway.  Peru’s ex-President Toledo predicted that the Interoceanic Highway would increase GDP growth by approximately 1.5 percent annually. (10) 

In addition to benefiting Peru and Brazil, the highway is expected to bring significant economic benefits to other South American nations. Bolivia is poised to benefit greatly, with its borders located within close proximity of the Interoceanic Highway.  By improving infrastructure in South America’s interior, the Interoceanic Highway stands to benefit neighboring nations’ economies.  The construction of East-West corridors will likely serve as a key component to regional infrastructure integration for South American nations in the 21st Century.

In 2012, Peru and Brazil ranked 53rd and 84th respectively on the Global Enabling Trade Index. (11)  This could change as the development of the Interoceanic Highway is expected to affect the international trade market. The Interoceanic Highway opens trade routes and allows South America’s interior to become more accessible to key international trade markets. China, in particular, stands to benefit from the highway with its “insatiable appetite for raw materials.” (12)  Previously, the majority of Brazilian products traveling to Asian markets had to be directed through the Panama Canal or Straights of Magellan.  By opening the Transoceanic Highway, China and other Asian markets now have improved access to key commodities grown in the Amazonian interior, such as sugar, coffee, soybeans and iron ore.  In addition, Peru and Brazil now have better access to Asian products.  The Interoceanic Highway reduces travel distance from South America’s interior to China’s port cities by thousands of miles.

While the Interoceanic Highway will likely bring economic prosperity to Peru, Brazil and other nations, it will come at a cost.  The road could threaten the heart of the Amazon Basin if proper measures are not taken to mitigate environmentally destructive activities. If environmental degradation can be minimized, the potential economic benefits could outweigh the negative externalities. As a native resident of the village of Baltimore adjacent to Puerto Maldonado put it, “It could be good.  If we are careful we could make more money and we could look after our land.” (13)

Demographic Shifts

The construction of the highway has helped facilitate a boom in Peru and Brazil’s population along the Amazon Basin. Peru, where the Amazonian interior is relatively underdeveloped, seems particularly unprepared to deal with major population shifts to the Amazon Basin.  While approximately 50 percent of Peru’s land is located in the rainforest, only five percent of the Peruvian population lives there. (14)

Economic opportunities in Puerto Maldonado caused massive population shifts from the Andean highlands into the area.   Andean migrants are drawn to opportunities that are often ecologically destructive, such as gold mining, rubber tapping, Brazil nut harvesting and logging. (15)  It is estimated that approximately 200 people each day arrive to Puerto Maldonado from the Andean departments of Cuzco, Apruimac and Puno via the Interoceanic Highway. (16)  Although precise figures remain difficult to determine, residents estimate that Puerto Maldonado’s population has doubled over the past decade. (17)

Puerto Maldonado’s population boom has impacted forest cover and structure around Puerto Maldonado and the Madre de Dios department in Peru, home to some of the most intact tropical rainforest, now stands at a crossroads. (18)  The population boom coming from the Andean highlands leaves Puerto Maldonado and surrounding areas overwhelmed with people in search of economic opportunities without any ties or indigenous knowledge of the land.  Even if measures are taken to mitigate the effects of this population boom, these demographic shifts appear to be permanent. Puerto Maldonado and surrounding areas in the Madre de Dios simply cannot absorb this population boom without a negative environmental impact. Population growth in the Peruvian Amazon will likely lead to increases in the deforestation rate in the surrounding areas, doing permanent damage to one of the Earth’s most biologically diverse ecosystems.

The Environmental Impact of Highways

According to the ecologist Thomas Lovejoy, “roads are the seeds of tropical forest destruction.” (19)  Road development typically results in significant changes in land-use in the surrounding areas.  Highways cutting through tropical rainforest leave surrounding areas more accessible to destructive activities such as logging, mining, agriculture and hunting.  Paved highways in tropical rainforest, such as the Interoceanic Highway, are particularly troublesome, as they often lead to the development of secondary roads, causing further degradation to the surrounding ecosystem. (20)

In a study of the impact of highways entitled “Ecological Effects of Road and Traffic: A Literature Review,” Ian F. Spellerberg examined the ecological effects of highways. (21)  According to Spellerberg, road construction often directly leads to a net loss of habitat and biota as well as changes and hydrology. (22)  In addition to the immediate effects resulting the construction of the road, Spellerberg lists several short-term effects following the completion of a new road and long-term effects that a road has on the surrounding ecosystem, which include ecosystem fragmentation, road kill, water contamination resulting from runoff, litter, emissions and bank erosion. (23)

Environmentalists fear that increased use of the Interoceanic Highway in the coming years will perpetuate large-scale logging, cattle ranching and gold mining operations among some of the more isolated forest areas along the road. (24)  Highway construction has direct and indirect environmental impacts.  With a width of 7.4 meters, (25) the Interoceanic Highway has made a significant impact on the lands it bisects.

Ecosystem Fragmentation

Madre de Dios is home to the Tambopata Reserved Zone, which is considered one of the most biologically significant areas on the planet.  The reserve is home to 587 species of birds as well as 91 mammal, 94 fish and 127 reptile or amphibian spaces, many of which are considered endangered. (26)  Located only 15 kilometers away from the highway, one of the Amazon’s most diverse areas is directly exposed to one of South America’s biggest development projects of the 21st Century.

In The Routes of Man, Ted Conover examined the Interoceanic Highway as it was in its earlier stages of development and explored the impact the road will have on wildlife and local communities.  He concluded his section on the highway with a brilliant analysis of the sloth’s habitat in the region as an example of the impact of fragmentation.  In discussing the road’s construction, Conover wrote, “while the Wasai’s perezoso (sloth) might still make its way across the river, I don’t think it could ever make it across the road.” (27)  Clearly, the highway poses a direct threat to the sloth and other types of species that inhabit the region.

Unless proper measures are taken to minimize ecosystem fragmentation, the Tambopata Reserved Zone and surrounding areas remain in jeopardy. In 1989, the Tambopata Reserve Zone was selected as a site for the Tambopata Macaw Project due to its location “in the center of a huge uninhabited tract of pristine tropical lowland forest.” (28)  The Tambopata Macaw Project has served a one of the most important areas in the world for research on the ecology and conservation on macaws and parrots.   However, due to disturbance from the Interoceanic Highway’s traffic, the Tambopata Macaw Project is contemplating relocating.  With so little pristine Amazonian rainforest remaining, it is clear that conservation policies must be enforced to protect the Tambopata Reserve Zone from the threat that the Interoceanic Highway poses.

In his studies of the Malay Archipelago, naturalist Alfred Russell Wallace wrote that the presence of “civilized man” would inevitably “disturb the nicely-balanced relations of organic and inorganic nature as to cause the disappearance, and finally the extinction” of the native species. (29)  As David Quammen pointed out in The Song of the Dodo, Wallace linked the “slow pageant of evolution to the speedy juggernaut of human caused evolution.” (30)  If the Peruvian government cannot enforce properly enforce conservation efforts, Wallace’s premonition may come true for the Tambopata Reserve Zone and other areas located within close proximity of the Interoceanic Highway.

Deforestation

The Interoceanic Highway leaves areas of pristine forest susceptible to unsustainable logging practices. The Amazon Basin is home to mahogany and other valuable hardwoods that can be exported to markets such as the United States, China and other markets for a premium price.  Logging is a major source of income for people living in and around Puerto Maldonado.  The opening of the Interoceanic Highway has led to “intense local and national pressure to expand logging in the region.” (31)

Deforestation rates in Madre de Dios were considered negligible until the mid-1960s, when a road was established to connect the Andean Highlands with Puerto Maldonado. (32)  The construction of the Interoceanic Highway has further increased deforestation rates in recent years.  Recent studies using satellite imagery, airborne-laser technology and ground-based surveys show significant increases in deforestation and environmental degradation in lands along the Interoceanic Highway. (33)

Tropical rainforest removal poses a significant threat to climate change as forest canopy serves as a major carbon dioxide sink.  It is estimated that 10 to 15 percent of carbon dioxide emissions worldwide result from the deforestation and degradation of tropical rainforests. (34)  It is estimated that approximately 50 percent all greenhouse gas emissions in Peru can be attributed to the destruction of forests and other changes in land-use patterns. (35)  If there is any hope of mitigating the effects of climate change on the behalf of Peru, conservation efforts to reduce deforestation rates in the remaining Amazonian rainforest must remain a priority.

If proper measures are not taken to protect Peru from unsustainable logging, mining and agricultural practices, the country’s remaining Amazonian forest will be at risk.  In the past ten years, Peru has lost more than 1 million hectares of tropical forest. (36)  According to one study, planned energy, hydrocarbon and mining projects coupled with other human activity could reduce Peru’s forest cover by 56 to 91 percent by 2021. (37)

Gold Mining

A recent surge in gold mining in Madre de Dios has played a critical role in increasing deforestation rates.  Illegal gold mining has been particularly problematic, account for approximately 90 to 98 percent of total mining activity in the department. (38)  By establishing itself as the fifth largest gold producer in the world, (39) Peru stands to provide economic opportunities for many residents in Peru’s interior.  Migrants from the Andean highlands arrive in Puerto Maldonado and other Amazonian outposts hoping to make their fortune in gold mining. However, gold production comes at an enormous ecological cost.

Environmental problems associated with mining activity are considerable.  Forest cover is removed to make room for mining operations and runoff from the operations adversely affect the health of the surrounding ecosystem contaminating the soil and water.  In a study of two mining zones in Madre de Dios, deforestation in these mining zones increased six-fold from 2003 to 2009. (40)  Mining activity is so destructive that Peru’s former Minister of the Environment, Antonio Brack, called for 80 percent of the department of Madre de Dios to be closed to mining activity. (41)  In addition, Brack called for an outright ban to river dredgers and other destructive forms of heavy machinery. (42)

Indigenous Communities

The construction of the Interoceanic Highway is poised to have a permanent effect on the livelihoods of indigenous groups in Madre de Dios.  Located in some of the most remote areas in South America, these tribes have remained isolated from the rest of Peru for centuries.  The opening of the highway now pits the interests of indigenous groups directly against the interests of loggers, small peasant farmer, gold miners, soy producers and cattle ranchers. (43)  Needless to say, a harmonious relationship between the indigenous groups and the region’s newcomers seems unlikely.

The recent boom in economic activity in Madre de Dios is already adversely affecting the living situation for indigenous tribes in the region.   Destructive activity such as logging, mining and agriculture are polluting the surrounding ecosystem, accelerating soil erosion rates, destroying canopy cover and contaminating the water supply.  Environmental degradation in Madre de Dios and other areas along the Interoceanic Highway place previously isolated indigenous groups in a precarious position.

But as Ted Conover noted in a 2003 National Geographic article, consequences affecting these indigenous groups go beyond environmental degradation.  In the coming years we will likely see indigenous groups affected by “disease, displacement and acculturation.” (44)  In addition, undesirable behavior such as drug activity and prostitution are poised to increase in coming years as traffic along the Interoceanic Highway increases. (45)  The highway’s effects on previously uncontacted communities will be “disastrous” according to Survival International, a non-government organization that advocates for the rights of indigenous groups. (46)

Mitigation Strategies

Due to the inherently destructive nature of roads, there appears to be no way to completely eliminate the negative externalities associated with the Interoceanic Highway.  Building a highway that bisects the heart of the Amazon Basin will almost certainly increase deforestation rates, degrade the health of surrounding ecosystem and adversely impact the livelihoods of local indigenous groups.  However, effective policy making and the promotion of reduced-impact practices could ameliorate some of the potential damage.

Peru has taken initiative to minimize deforestation along the Interoceanic Highway.  Despite pressure to expand logging, Peru has worked hard to protect this region.  The Peruvian government established a body assigned to “create and monitor a buffer zone between the highway and the Tambopata reserve.” (47)  In addition, Peru has devoted 60 percent of lands in Madre de Dios toward protected areas and indigenous reserves. (48)  The Peruvian government has also demonstrated its willingness to cooperate internationally in efforts to protect its forests.  Peru’s ministry of the environment has announced its intent to coordinate with the United Nations’ Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (UN-REDD) Programme. (49)  These efforts are a strong start, but conservation efforts must be properly enforced if this region has any chance of standing up against mining, logging and agricultural activity.

Since agricultural, mining and logging activity will continue in Madre de Dios, measures must be taken to promote practices that minimize environmental impact.  For example, reduced-impact logging techniques must be implemented by loggers to reduce deforestation rates and ecosystem degradation.  Traditional logging methods damage 10 to 20 trees for every one that is harvested. (50)  Reduced-impact logging uses techniques to reduce disturbance such as “preharvest tree selection and vine cutting, directional felling, and planned extraction (skid) trails and log decks.” (51)  Reduced-impact logging decreases damage to residual forests, creates less erosion and can reduce carbon emissions by up to 30 percent in comparison to traditional logging techniques. (52) (53)

If agriculture is going to expand in the region, then it should be considered imperative to promote agroforestry techniques, which reduce soil erosion rates and minimize ecosystem degradation.  Furthermore, agroforestry techniques incorporate the local ecosystem into the agricultural practices, thereby reducing deforestation rates. Although labor intensive, agroforestry plots tend to produce high yields if properly managed. In order to minimize unsustainable agricultural projects, it is important for the Peruvian government organizations to encourage agroforestry techniques and avoid providing subsidies for rice, soybeans and cattle in the Amazon Basin. (54)

Mining activity must be strictly regulated and confined to limited areas in order to reduce water contamination and deforestation rates.  While the Peruvian government has worked to establish sustainable forest management requirements in recent years, illegal mining remains a major problem in Madre de Dios. (55)  Law enforcement must continue to crack down on illegal mining that has devastated the region in recent years.  Furthermore, the Peruvian government must follow through with its current project of exploring possibilities to minimize the use of mercury in mining practices and consequently reduce the contamination of the surrounding ecosystem. (56)

At times, the Peruvian government has taken strong initiative to protect the rights of indigenous communities.  In the 1990s, significant measures were taken to protect indigenous land rights and preserve Peru’s interior. (57)  More recently, Peru’s current president, Ollanta Humala, signed the Consultation with Indigenous Peoples Law in 2011.  This law, which was unanimously passed by Congress, requires consultation the government to consult with indigenous groups before embarking on projects such as oil exploration, mining and dam building. (58)   While the government obviously cannot retroactively consult with indigenous groups about constructing the Interoceanic Highway, this renewed commitment to indigenous communities and their rights is a significant step in the right direction.  If we are to reduce the impact of the Interoceanic Highway on indigenous groups, President Humala and the Peruvian government must continue to take initiatives to protect their rights.

Madre de Dios has been a popular destination for tourists in recent years.  Located within close proximity of Peru’s premier hotspots for tourism, Cuzco and Macchu Picchu, thousands of tourists visit Puerto Maldonado and the Tambopata Nature Reserve each year to stay in eco-lodges and visit some of the world’s best-preserved tropical forest.  These lodges are able to charge a premium rate to visitors and serve as a significance source of income for the local economy.  In many respects, jobs in the ecotourism industry serve as some of the best alternatives to the environmentally destructive activities that have become predominant sources of income in Puerto Maldonado.  Furthermore, the income ecotourism brings gives additional incentive to enhance conservation efforts.  Maximizing employment opportunities in ecotourism will be critical to reducing the environmental impact of the Transoceanic Highway in the coming years.

Conclusion

In order to maximize economic growth and improve infrastructure, Peru and Brazil agreed to construct the Interoceanic Highway.  The inauguration of the Continental Bridge and subsequent opening of the highway was a symbol of both hope and trepidation for Peru.  While Peru’s economy is poised to benefit substantially from the highway’s completion in the coming years, it will come at a price. The recent population surge in the region, boom in unsustainable economic activity and increased traffic flow places the remaining tropical rainforest in Madre de Dios and other areas along the Interoceanic Highway in serious risk of peril.  If there is any hope that the Tambopata Reserve Zone and Interoceanic Highway can co-exist, the government, non-government organizations and local residents must work together to implement and enforce effective policy.

 

Footnotes

1. Katrina Brandon, Gustavo B. Da Fonseca, Anthony B. Rylands and José Maria Cardoso Da Silva,  “Special Section: Brazilian Conservation: Challenges and Opportunities,”  Conservation Biology 19.3 (2005): 595-600.

2.  Joanna Cabello, “Enclosure of Forests and People: REDD and the Inter-Oceanic Highway in Peru,” No REDD! (2010): 85.

3. Tyler Bridges, “Brazil, Peru Pave Way for Solid Link,” The Houston Chronicle 1 Feb. 2006.

4. Olivia Tickell, “Highway Threatens Tambopata,” Geographical 65.12 (1993).

5. Lisa Naughton-Treves, “Deforestation and Carbon Emissions at Tropical Frontiers: A Case Study,” World Development 32.1 (2004): 173.

6. Dan Collyns and Tom Phillips, “Pacific-Atlantic Route Drives Up Fears of Crime and Destruction,” The Guardian 14 July 2011.

7. “Southern Interoceanic Highway (Peru-Brazil),” Bank Information Center, <http://www.bicusa.org/en/Project.10312.aspx>.

8. Graeme Gourlay,   “Off the Beaten Track: The Tambopata National Reserve Deep in the Peruvian Amazon is Incredibly Biodiverse and a Booming Centre for Ecotourism. But Will the New Nearby Interoceanic Highway Lead to its Ruin?” Geographical 82.12 (2010): 56-62.

9. Eric Toler, “All Roads Lead to Infrastructure: Peru as a Trade Bridge Between South America and Asia,” The Hemispheric Review 1 (2012): 57.

10. “Southern Interoceanic Highway (Peru-Brazil).”

11. Robert Z. Lawrence, Margareta Drzeniek Hanouz, and Sean Doherty.  “The Global Enabling Trade Report 2012: Reducing Supply Chain Barriers." World Economic Forum (2012).

12. Toler 57.

13. Gourlay, “Off the Beaten Path.”

14. “The Ecological Effects of Roads in the Brazilian Amazon: Current Status and Prospects for the Future.”

15. Conover, Ted, “Peru’s Long Haul: Highway to Riches, or Ruin?” National Geographic 203.6 (2003): 80, 82, 85-88, 90, 92-94, 96-99.

16. Collyns, “Pacific-Atlantic Route Drives Up Fears of Crime and Destruction.”

17. Clay Risen, “A Mega-Dam Dilemma in the Amazon,” Smithsonian Magazine (2011).

18. Conover, “Peru’s Long Haul: Highway to Riches, or Ruin?”

19. William Luarence,  “As Roads Spread in Rainforests, The Environmental Toll Grows,” Yale Environment 360, 19 Jan 2012.

20. Laurence, “As Roads Spread in Rainforests, The Environmental Toll Grows.”

21. Ian F. Spellerberg,  “Ecological Effects of Road and Traffic: A Literature Review,” Global Ecology and Biogeography Letters 7.5 (1998): 318.

22. Spellerberg 318.

23. Spellerberg 318.

24. Tickell, “Highway Threatens Tambopata.”

25. “South American Project Stretches Ocean to Ocean,” ENR: Engineering News-Record 258.1 (2007).

26. Tickell, “Highway Threatens Tambopata.”

27. Ted Conover, The Routes of Man: How Roads are Changing the World and the Way Live Today (New York: Random House, 2011) 65.

28. “About the Project,” Tambopata Macaw Project: Proyecto Guacamayo, <http://www.macawproject.org/about>.

29. Daniel Quammen, The Song of the Dodo: Island Biogeography in an Age of Extinction (New York: Scribner, 1996) 611.

30. Quammen 612

31. Naughton-Treves 185.

32. Naughton-Treves 185.

33. Gourley, “Off the Beaten Track.”

34. Gregory P. Asner, George V. N. Powell, Joseph Mascarao, David E. Knapp, John K. Clark, James Jacobsen, Ty Kennedy-Bowdoin, Aravindh Balaji, Guayana Paez-Acosta, Eloy Victora, Laura Secada, Michael Valqui and R. Flint Hughes,  “High-Resolution Forest Carbon Stocks and Emissions in the Amazon,” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 107.38 (2010): 16738.

35. United States, United States Agency for International Development (USAID), Peru Climate Change Vulnerability and Adaptation Desktop Study (Washington: International Resources Group, 2011) 16.

36. USAID 16.

37. USAID 16.

38. Donovan Webster,  “The Devastating Costs of the Amazon Gold Rush,” Smithsonian Magazine (2012).

39. Mhari Roberts.  “Interoceanic Highway- Road to Ruin?” The Argentina Independent, 3 Aug 2011.

40. Jennifer J. Swenson, Catherine E. Carter, Jean-Christopher Dome and Cesar I. Delgado,  “Gold Mining in the Peruvian Amazon: Global Prices, Deforestation, and Mercury Imports, PLOS One.

41. Dan Collyns, “Peru’s Gold Rush Sparks Fears of Ecological Disaster,” BBC News, 20 Dec 2009.

42. Collyns, “Peru’s Gold Rush Sparks Fears of Ecological Disaster.”

43. Brandon, ““Special Section: Brazilian Conservation: Challenges and Opportunities.”

44. Conover, “Peru’s Long Haul: Highway to Riches, or Ruin?”

45. Conover, “Peru’s Long Haul: Highway to Riches, or Ruin?”

46. Roberts, “Interoceanic Highway – Road to Ruin?”

47. Gourlay, “Off the Beaten Track.”

48. Naughton-Treves 182.

49. Cabello 86.

50. “Climate Change: What We Do.  Reduced-Impact Logging.” The Nature Conservancy.  <http://www.nature.org/ourinitiatives/urgentissues/global-warming-climate-change/explore/reduced-impact-logging.xml>.

51. Scott D. Miller, Michael L. Goulden, Lucy R. Hutrya, Michael Keller, Scott R. Saleska, Steven C. Wofsy, Adelaine Michela Silva Figueira, Humberto R. da Rocha and Pinio B. de Camargo,  “Reduced Impact Logging Minimally Alters Tropical Rainforest Carbon and Energy Exchange,”  PNAS: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 108.48 (2011): 19431-19435.

52. Dennis P. Dykstra, “Reduced-Impact Logging: What’s the Bottom Line,” Global Leaflet 2 (2003).

53. “Climate Change: What We Do. Reduced-Impact Logging.”

54. Naughton-Treves 184.

55. Alejandro Coca and Louis Raymondin, “The Devastating Costs of the Rush for Gold in Madre de Dios, Peru,” Terra-i: An Eye on Habitat Change (2012).

56. Coca and Raymondin, “The Devastating Costs of the Rush for Gold in Madre de Dios, Peru.”

57. Gourlay, “Off the Beaten Track.”

58. Mattia Cabitza,  “Peru Leads the Way for Latin America’s Indigenous Communities,”  The Guardian,  23 Sept. 2011.
 

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