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Climate Change and Protected Areas in Bolivia

Part of the Climate Change Management book series (CCM)

Abstract

Climate change is probably the main challenge humanity is facing in the twenty-first century, and even though Bolivia belongs to the nations least responsible for global greenhouse gas output, the impacts of climate change and global warming (glacier retreat in the Cordillera mountain range; droughts in the Altiplano, the inner Andean dry valleys, and the Chaco region; inundations in the Beni lowlands) are affecting an ever increasing number of people. Thus, to tackle the impacts of climate change in Bolivia is not only a task for political authorities at national, departmental, municipal, or communal level, but also one that has to be taken up by the management practitioners of the country’s protected areas. Nonetheless, the impacts of climate change are not yet a central issue in the management of the Bolivian National Protected Area System.

This article shows how protected areas are “victims” of climate change, since their biodiversity is being affected by rising temperatures and changes in the hydrological regime; we also analyse in what ways Bolivia’s protected areas are a fundamental element in the drafting of mitigation and adaptation strategies, considering the importance they have in maintaining ecosystem resilience and the provision of environmental services.

Keywords

  • Adaptation
  • Andes
  • Bolivia
  • Climate change
  • Global warming
  • Mitigation
  • Protected areas

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Acknowledgments

We thank Carlos Alberto Arnillas, Roberto Ulloa, and two anonymous reviewers for their very helpful advice and comments.

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Appendix: National Protected Areas of Bolivia

Appendix: National Protected Areas of Bolivia

Protected Area Extention (ha) Department Year of declaration Year management established Main ecosystems included
Parque Nacional Sajama 100,230 Oruro 1939 1995 Puna Desértica con Pisos Nivales y Subnivales de la Cordillera Occidental
Parque Nacional Tunari 300,000 Cochabamba 1962 s/d Puna Semihúmeda, Yungas
Parque Nacional y Territorio Indígena Isiboro-Sécure 1,236,296 Cochabamba/Beni 1965 1995 Bosques Amazónicos Pre- y Subandinos, Sabanas Inundables de los Llanos de Moxos
Área Natural de Manejo Integrado Nacional Apolobamba 483,743 La Paz 1972 1977 Yungas, Vegetación Altoandina de la Cordillera Oriental con Pisos Nivales y Subnivales
Reserva Nacional de Fauna Andina Eduardo Avaroa 714,745 Potosí 1973 1994 Puna Desértica con Pisos Nivales y Subnivales de la Cordillera Occidental
Reserva Nacional de Vida Silvestre Amazónica Manuripi 747,000 Pando 1973 1999 Bosques Amazónicos de Pando y de Inundación
Parque Nacional Noel Kempff Mercado 1,523,446 Santa Cruz 1979 1992 Bosques Amazónicos del Beni y Santa Cruz, Cerrado Chiquitano, Bosques Amazónicos de Inundación
Reserva de la Biosfera Estación Biológica del Beni 135,000 Beni 1982 1985 Bosques Amazónicos Preandinos, Sabanas Inundables de los Llanos de Moxos
Parque Nacional y Área Natural de Manejo Integrado Amboró 637,600 Santa Cruz 1984 1989 Yungas, Bosques Amazónicos Subandinos, Bosque Tucumano – Boliviano
Parque Nacional Torotoro 16,570 Potosí 1989 1997 Bosques Secos Interandinos
Reserva Nacional de Flora y Fauna Tariquía 246,870 Tarija 1989 1995 Bosque Tucumano – Boliviano, Chaco Serrano
Parque Nacional Carrasco 622,600 Cochabamba 1991 1992 Yungas, Bosques Amazónicos Subandinos y otros
Reserva Biológica de la Cordillera de Sama 108,500 Tarija 1991 1997 Puna Semihúmeda, Bosque Tucumano – Boliviano
Reserva de la Biosfera y Territorio Indígena Pilón Lajas 400,000 La Paz/Beni 1992 1992 Bosques Amazónicos Subandinos, Yungas
Parque Nacional y Área Natural de Manejo Integrado Cotapata 40,000 La Paz 1993 1993 Yungas, Vegetación Altoandina de la Cordillera Oriental con pisos Nivales y Subnivales
Área Natural de Manejo Integrado San Matías 2,918,500 Santa Cruz 1995 1999 Bosque Seco Chiquitano, Sabanas Inundables del Pantanal, Cerrado Chiquitano
Parque Nacional y Área Natural de manejo Integrado Kaa-Iya del Gran Chaco 3,441,115 Santa Cruz 1995 1995 Gran Chaco (Cerrado Chaqueño)
Parque Nacional y Área Natural de Manejo Integrado Madidi 1,895,750 La Paz 1995 1995 Yungas, Bosques Amazónicos Sub- y Preandinos, Bosques Secos Interandinos y otros
Área Natural de Manejo Integrado El Palmar 59,484 Chuquisaca 1997 2002 Bosques Secos Interandinos, Chaco Serrano
Parque Nacional y Área Natural de Manejo Integrado Otuquis 1,005,950 Santa Cruz 1997 2002 Sabanas Inundables del Pantanal, Cerrado Chaqueño, Bosque Seco Chiquitano
Parque Nacional y Área Natural de Manejo Integrado Serranía del Aguaragüe 108,307 Tarija 2000 2007 Bosque Tucumano – Boliviano, Chaco Serrano, Gran Chaco
Parque Nacional y Área Natural de Manejo Integrado Serranía del Iñao 263,090 Chuquisaca 2004 2007 Bosque Tucumano – Boliviano, Chaco Serrano
Total (has) 17,004,796     
  1. Source: Ibisch and Mérida 2003; SERNAP 2007
  2. s/d: No data

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Hoffmann, D., Oetting, I. (2011). Climate Change and Protected Areas in Bolivia. In: Leal Filho, W. (eds) The Economic, Social and Political Elements of Climate Change. Climate Change Management. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-642-14776-0_23

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