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Declaration on Biodiversity for Livelihoods:

Declaration on Biodiversity for Livelihoods:


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By Alliance for Food Sovereignty

The industrial systems of agricultural, livestock and fishing production, together with the advancement of mega extractive, infrastructure and tourism projects, are leading humanity to a dead end, characterized by the destruction of natural ecosystems, of knowledge traditional, peasant way of life and biodiversity. This situation requires urgent action on the part of governments and international organizations, which goes beyond lukewarm statements and addresses the underlying problems and central causes. It also requires that the communities take in their hands the unrestricted defense of their autonomous and sovereign production systems.

It is a war against the peoples that since the beginning of time have subsisted and fed humanity, to appropriate their territories, their seeds, their knowledge and their biodiversity, which has already demonstrated its dire consequences.

Throughout the 20th century and so far in the 21st century there has been the greatest destruction of agricultural biodiversity built over 12 thousand years of agriculture, with a loss of 75% of it. Industrial agriculture is the main responsible, according to FAO figures. Since the beginning of agriculture, more than 7,000 species of plants have been cultivated or collected for food, many of them, with thousands of varieties, which have been recreated in the dialogue of human beings with nature.


Currently only 30 crops provide 95% of human food, and only four of them - rice, wheat, corn and potatoes - supply more than 60%.

Peasant and family livestock have made a contribution of more or less 4,500 breeds from 40 or more animal species and developed during the last 12,000 years. Six breeds of animals per month are disappearing. These breeds represent the remaining set of animal genetic diversity, which should supply future food demands. Recent information suggests that 30% of the world's breeds are in danger of extinction. The main cause is the brutal advance of industrial production systems that are based on just three species (cows, pigs, chickens) and that occupy territories, pollute the environment, generate new diseases, threaten Creole races and human beings.

The immense aquatic diversity in seas and rivers is the main sustenance for artisanal fishing. For thousands of years it has been producing food for people in a sustainable way, and it is seriously threatened by the advance of industrial fishing systems that have wiped out aquatic diversity. Today the panorama shows us that more than 50% of the world's marine stocks are fully exploited, 17% overexploited and 8% depleted due to abusive use. The production of inland water fisheries is often affected by intensive fishing but also, and more importantly, by the effect of environmental degradation and modification of river basins, which affect the capacity of fisheries production and The Biodiversity.

Finally, forests, rivers, jungles, mountains, grasslands and other natural ecosystems - which support thousands of communities of indigenous peoples, gatherers and peasants in the world - are suffering a severe attack due to the advance of the model described. Each year 13 million hectares of forests are lost, mainly due to their conversion to other land uses. All this destruction has been deeply linked and is related to a productive system that has lost its way. This system is characterized by:

- The commercialization of natural assets, the expansion of monocultures, the use of hybrid and transgenic seeds and the consequent application of pesticides.

- An unprecedented corporate concentration that means that today most of the different market niches are controlled by a handful of corporations.

- The use of dangerous technologies such as the use of pesticides, transgenic seeds, and precision agriculture, which are aimed at corporate control of the agri-food system. Added to this is the danger of adopting new technologies such as Terminator seeds, new transgenic crops resistant to highly dangerous herbicides, synthetic biology and others.

- The application of intellectual property rights over life (patents, breeder's rights and others) and the regulations that oblige the registration and certification of seeds and agroecological production, as mechanisms for the monopolization of agriculture, seeds, and life in general. In this field, the promotion of Seed Laws from UPOV 91, has acquired in recent years an unusual virulence throughout the Continent.

- The promotion of market mechanisms such as the "Green Economy" are being imposed from the international and national spheres, which propagandize false solutions to the food crisis.

- The homogenization of production as a productive, social and cultural paradigm. This homogenization favors the consumption of uniform material goods at a global level and is carrying out a profound destruction of the diversity of cultures that humanity has developed for thousands of years.

- Pollution produced by agro-industrial and industrial production systems, which do not assume any responsibility for the impacts they cause. - The relocation of productive systems and communities as a mechanism for business control.

- The appropriation of knowledge, territories, cultures for their commercialization and commercialization. - The displacement of millions of people around the world to large cities to turn them into mere passive consumers without roots.

- Accumulation by dispossession to occupy, by any means, the territories of the peoples and turn them into looting spaces.

- Financial speculation as a mechanism to place all assets on the market and maximize corporate profits.

- The use of the climate, energy, biodiversity, food and environmental crises to create new businesses and new dispossession mechanisms.

-Devaluation and invisibility of the modes of production of knowledge at the community level.

We say ENOUGH! and we demand that this process of extermination of nature and our systems of life be put to an end. We demand to incorporate into the technical diagnoses, a political analysis that gives names and surnames to those responsible for this crime and that the steps to be followed to prosecute those responsible, stop their actions and reestablish sustainable productive systems, that are in the hands of the communities.

At a minimum, an action plan for Diversity for Livelihood should contain the following aspects:

- Dismantle the corporate power that sustains industrial production systems, which are destroying our life systems, as the only possibility for humanity to survive.

- The complete elimination of all the mechanisms of intellectual property rights and the “Monsanto” seed laws that are being promoted in almost all the countries of the region to advance with the process of appropriation of the life and knowledge of the towns, liquidate peasant agriculture and expand industrial agriculture.

- The prohibition of all technological developments that threaten natural, agricultural and aquatic systems and sovereign food production.

- The declaration of Latin America as a Territory Free of GMOs, the integral restoration of the ecosystems already affected by these technologies, the identification of those responsible for their adoption and the implementation of the necessary measures to make this decision concrete.

-The prohibition and withdrawal from the market of pesticides, starting with extremely dangerous pesticides, in order to move towards an agroecological transition.

- The dismantling of all financial speculation mechanisms with food, in application of the Human Right to Food as a Basic Human Right, which cannot be subject to market mechanisms.

- The establishment of public policies based on Food Sovereignty based on the participation of local communities and respect for cultural, social and ecological diversity.

- The implementation of a profound Comprehensive and Popular Agrarian Reform that returns the land to those who produce food, as well as the recognition of the right to water as a fundamental human right.

- Recognition of the right of artisanal fishermen and collectors to aquatic territories, their culture and aquatic diversity as a basis for the continuity of their livelihood.

-The implementation of public policies to support agroecological production including the establishment and strengthening of local markets.

- The defense of Seeds as Heritage of Peoples at the Service of Humanity and of all animal and aquatic diversity as a fundamental basis for the livelihood of our future generations.

At the same time, we, the organizations present here, commit to continue producing food for humanity as we have been doing since the beginning of history and as we continue to do today, when with just 24% of the earth, we produce 70 % of the foods that feed all of humanity.

Informative Minga of Social Movements


Video: I Have a Seed International Day for Biological Diversity 2016 Laurent Gaberell (May 2022).