Tania Romero Bautista is one of Conservation Nation’s 2021 established conservationist grant winners. Born and raised in Madre de Dios, Peru, Tania is passionate about supporting Amazonian communities. Through her professional and volunteer experience, Tania has acquired a deep knowledge of social and community-based conservation projects and acquired a multitude of field research skills. She’s worked for World Wildlife Fund (WWF) Perú to help develop a conservation agreement with the Boca Pariamanu Indigenous community to promote initiatives like REDD+ (Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation). She’s also worked with the Regional Government of Madre de Dios on a project that assessed the vulnerability of agricultural and forestry activities in the face of climate change. Tania holds an undergraduate degree in Ecotourism from the National Amazonian University of Madre de Dios and a Master’s degree in Sustainable Development Practice from the University of Florida as a Fulbright Graduate Degree Fellow. She is pursuing her PhD at Florida International University.
Freshwater Ecosystems Conservation in the Peruvian Amazon
Andean-Amazonian watersheds play an important role in biodiversity conservation and human wellbeing. They provide an important source of food and freshwater, perform critical ecosystem services, and create corridors for local wildlife and endangered species. Similarly, riparian communities, those who are living along these watersheds, depend on the resources they provide for their livelihoods, making them vulnerable to negative impacts from encroachment of human development. These ecosystems and river species, in turn, depend on their human inhabitants to adopt practices that will ensure their long-term health and functioning. Tania’s research aims to restore riparian communities in Peru’s Marañon watershed to the center of the problem-solving process where they belong and provide a template of cooperative engagement that other organizations, regional actors, and decision-makers can follow.