Bolivia’s government is about to approve a mega-highway that could enable foreign companies to pillage the world’s most important forest. But, Bolivians are fighting back and today we have a massive opportunity to help them win — top Bolivian ministers have agreed to a meeting with Avaaz in New York.
Huge economic interests are pushing Morales to approve the final permits for a highway through the Amazon. But a massive protest in Bolivia and an outcry from Avaaz members across Latin America are ramping up the pressure to stop the highway — in response, Bolivia’s Foreign and Interior Ministers have just agreed to take time out from meeting world leaders to personally receive our petition week! Let’s supercharge our call before the meeting.
Over 90,000 Latin Americans have joined this campaign the last few days. Now let’s show Morales and his government that the world wants them to stand up for the Amazon bystopping this destructive highway. Click to sign the urgent petition, then forward this message to everyone:
Isiboro Sécure National Park is the crown jewel of the Bolivian Amazon, famous for its huge trees and astonishing wildlife. It is a doubly protected area — as a National Park and an indigenous reserve, known as TIPNIS in Spanish. Bolivian and international law say indigenous leaders must be consulted if the government wishes to take their land, but the government has ignored their vocal opposition and failed to study a single alternative road route.
Evo Morales has pushed through construction approval, arguing that the road will bring prosperity, but the main winners would be massive oil, mining and farming businesses. Illegal logging, plantations and oil drilling are already choking the park — which may lose 64% of its forest cover in the next 20 years if the road is built. Morales, Bolivia’s first indigenous President, has often stood strong for the environment and indigenous people, including championing the Universal Declaration for the Rights of Mother Earth. By standing with Bolivians fighting the road, we can help Morales face down pressures for destructive development.
Pressure is reaching boiling point, with a mass march on La Paz, and former members of Morales’s cabinet speaking against the project. Let’s add our voices to this chorus for Amazon protection and respect for indigenous communities — sign this urgent petition to stop the illegal highway and find safer alternatives:
Indigenous peoples’ organizations have often shown amazing strength in warding off foreign companies and ensuring their rights are not sacrificed on the altar of economic development. President Evo Morales, often one of the world’s most visionary leaders, has said “humankind is capable of saving the earth if we recover the principles of solidarity, complementarity and harmony with nature.” He needs our support to stand strong for these precious principles.
Luis, Laura, Emma, Ricken, David, Diego, Shibayan, Alex and the rest of the Avaaz team
Indigenous Bolivians march against Amazon road (BBC):
Bolivia’s Eco-President: How Green is Evo Morales? (Time)
Evading indigenous consultation in Bolivia (Al Jazeera):
Morales, his moral maze and a road into Amazon wilderness (The Independent):
Evo instigates law granting rights to Mother Earth (Environment News Service):
Article citing study of deforestation projections (in Spanish):
Indigenous and Presidents Clash in Ecuador and Bolivia (Huffington Post):
- Indigenous Bolivians March Against Highway (indiancountrytodaymedianetwork.com)
- Venezuela’s Chávez and Evo Morales Land in Cuba Following Meeting in Caracas (redantliberationarmy.wordpress.com)
- Indigenous activists gain momentum in Bolivia (edmortimer.wordpress.com)