MEASURES TAKEN TO IMPLEMENT THE CBD PROGRAMMES OF WORK AND ACHIEVE THE 2010 BIODIVERSITY TARGET
The São Paulo City Hall has adopted a series of measures aimed at protecting and preserving the city's biodiversity, through public policies and action plans developed and implemented by the different government departments. These include: back to top
The city of São Paulo has had, since 2002, a new Strategic Master Plan, published through Municipal Law no. 13,430/02, which is the legal document that regulates the urban, economic, and social development policies, as well as being the regulatory landmark for land use in the city, whether in already urbanized areas, or in the areas still free of urban occupation. These areas contain the last reserves of biodiversity, which provide environmental services that are essential for the sustainability of the city.
The great advance of this law was the incorporation of the environmental dimension in the clauses of the city's urban policies, which in the past were marked by a predominantly urban perspective. The municipal territory was divided into two macro-zones: The Environmental Protection Macro-zone, and Urban Infrastructure and Qualification Macro-zone.
Various sources of information were used to define the limits between the two macro-zones, such as legal instruments, as well as data on land use, geologic-geotechnical conditioning factors, and defense of the biodiversity, all of which all generated and/or made available in the Environmental Atlas
The idea that permeates the definition of the Environmental Protection Macro-zone, which comprises around one third of the city's territory, is the need to preserve, conserve and restore the natural environment, guaranteeing the provision of essential environmental services for the environmental quality of the city. The implementation of residential uses and the development of any urban activity in this macro-zone should be based on this principle.
It also incorporates the concept of a Structural Water Network made up of rivers and creeks, as a new structuring element of the city's landscape, in an attempt to move away from the classic approach that always considered the highway and transportation networks as the city's structuring axes.
In this new context, the Environmental Recovery Program of Waterways and Valley Bottoms was created, the main intervention of which was the concept of the Linear Park, with the main objectives of continual expansion of the permeable green areas, as an action for controlling and minimizing flooding and the integration of different areas of significant vegetation in the city, which today are isolated from each other, performing the role of urban ecological corridors that protect and restoration of the biodiversity.
The Municipal Secretariat of Green Areas and the Environment is proposing to revise the Urban Master Plan by adding a policy for paying for environmental services and calling for the compulsory use of unoccupied buildings in the city's expanded center for residential purposes, seeking to ease congestion in the environmental protection macro-zone.
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Some of the actions that have been implemented are: the improvement of inspection and control in the occupation of the region, the freezing of new building in the areas with irregular occupation, the mapping and registration of areas, the demolition and removal of irregular housing, the urbanization of slums and poor neighborhoods, the regularization of land ownership, the cleaning and gathering of trash, the revitalization of 22 creeks, and the promotion of the economic and social development in the region. All the actions are widely discussed and promoted in the communities, and have the purpose of complying with the legislation for protecting the areas around the springs, which are the richest areas in the city of São Paulo in terms of biodiversity.
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- MUNICIPAL ENVIRONMENTAL POLICE
The São Paulo Administration created the Municipal Environmental Inspection Police in March 2007. It currently has 300 guards working in the areas of natural watershed reserves and environmental protection in the City of São Paulo. This team has the priority of preventing predatory actions and irregular land occupation and protecting the City's environmental heritage.
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- INTRODUCTION OF NEW MUNICIPAL PARKS
In order to expand the city's plant cover, increase the urban biodiversity, recover the waterways and their respective banks, and create recreational equipment for the population, work will begin in 2008 to introduce five national parks, with a total area of 1,734 hectares, as well as 36 linear parks totaling an area of 856.5 hectares, and seven new urban parks.
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- INVENTORY OF THE CITY'S FLORA AND FAUNA
In 1998, the Municipal Herbarium was registered in the Index Herbariorum
, a publication with data on selected herbariums around the world. In 2004 it was approved by the Genetic Heritage Management Council (CGEN) of the Brazilian Ministry of the Environment
as a trustee of components of genetic patrimony. Currently the collection has 9,593 samples, only 835 (8.7%) of which are registered with database records.
The fauna inventory of the City of São Paulo
began in 1993 with the objective of assisting the fauna management in the city's territory, and its last update was published in June 2006. In the 48 areas systematically surveyed, 432 animal species were registered, in addition to some sporadic registrations. These species include 73 endemic to the Atlantic Forest, 23 species threatened, and 14 probably threatened (according to the IUCN
lists and national and state official lists).
The inventory carries out its fundamental roles of supporting the animals freed by the Technical Division of Veterinary Medicine and Wild Fauna Management, backing studies and environmental impact reports, directing projects for the management of green areas in the city, generating environmental indicators, and guiding public polices; it is a source of publications such as guides to wild fauna, the Atlas Ambiental do Município (Environmental Atlas of the City)
, and GEO Cidade de São Paulo
, and also contributes to cataloging the biodiversity of the State of São Paulo.
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- FLORA MANAGEMENT
The São Paulo City Hall, through the Municipal Secretariat of Green Areas and the Environment, is carrying out a major program to increase the number of trees in the city, especially in areas with little vegetation. The program has planted around 9,000 trees per month since 2006 and has plans to increase this number to 15,000 seedlings a month in 2008. Around 166 different native species are produced by the Technical Division of Production, which has three greenhouses. Based on the collection seeds from different places around the city, the program is also aimed at increasing the biodiversity in the urban parks, and implementing green corridors in order to promote the reproduction and circulation of wild fauna.
Around 162,000 samplings, obtained from purchases and environmental compensations, were planted in 2006. After planting, the plants are also maintained, including those in the municipal parks and those along the streets.
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- FAUNA MANAGEMENT
The management of wild animals in the São Paulo City Hall is the responsibility of the Technical Division of Veterinary Medicine and Wild Fauna Management
This Division provides medical-veterinary services with biological follow-up of wild animals that have become victims of urban pressure, or which are seized in operations to combat the illegal trade of animals. It also carries out the task of continually mapping out the fauna in the municipal parks and other protected areas, generating an Inventory of the Fauna in the City of São Paulo
One of the main activities is the rehabilitation of wild animals which have become victims, with the aim of freeing them back into the wild, with the adoption of technical criteria for doing so. Since the creation of the service in 1991, up until the end of 2006, a total of 24,692 animals were cared for, including 333 species, 12,579 of which were released into the areas of origin or occurrence of the species, in other words, 51% of the animals rescued were reintegrated back into the natural environment. The animals that do not meet the requirements for release are sent to zoos and other approved institutions. This Division receives around 155 animals a month, and since it was set up until November 2007, it has rescued 33,129 animals.
Every animal received are registered, identified, tagged, weighed, and given medical-veterinary assistance. Biological materials are also collected for laboratory exams, and the information recorded on individual records. The animals are handled according to their biological specifications, and are retained until they receive a final destination (release or captivity). The animals that die are submitted to necropsy exams and the biological material is sent to museums when there is interest in receiving it.
The purpose of the laboratory exams is to diagnose diseases, even unapparent once such as rabies, leptospirosis, toxoplasmosis, and hantaviruses, through partnerships with research institutes and universities. The objective is to obtain epidemiological data, aiming at the health of the animals and the protection of public health, considering that most of the animals rescued live in the urban environment, close to domestic animals and the human population.
Using the biological material collected from the animals rescued, various studies are carried in institutes that work with the diagnosis and control of parasitic and infectious diseases in the State of São Paulo, as well as universities, culminating in the publication of various scientific papers.
In relating to the follow-up of the releases, between October 1998 and May 2005, 3,854 birds were ringed and released back into the wild. The data recovery rate was 2.2%, of which 52.4% were birds of prey.
Other monitoring systems are adopted for other classes of animals (mammals, reptiles, and amphibians) such as the application of tattoos and microchips.
One of the species rescued is the howler monkey (Alouatta guariba clamitans), whose complexity and threat of extinction led to the Howler Monkey Relocation Project. Nine groups of howler monkeys - a total of 24 individuals - have been released into the remaining areas of the city's Atlantic Forest. One of the evidences of the project's contribution to the survival of the species is the fact that ten births have taken place in captivity, and another two have been born in freedom.
The native, exotic, and domestic wild fauna belonging to the areas within municipal parks receive care according to their biological, nutritional, and reproductive needs, with biological follow-up and actions focused on the control of zoonosis.
All of the data relating to the registration of the animals rescued are fed into a fauna information system (Sisfauna). This tool enables the animals` movements to be controlled, in order to manage the scientific service and research related to the wildlife. This database contributes to the creation indicators for the wildlife included in the GEO Cidade de São Paulo 2004, which is part of the GEO - Global Environment Outlook project of UNEP.
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Part of the results from the works provided by the Municipal Herbarium and the Wild Fauna Division, is due to the various partnerships that have been formed at municipal, state, and federal levels. Various research institutions and universities are collaborating to carry out studies requiring mainly laboratories and technical specialists.
Some of the country’s renowned institutions are involved in this collaboration, such as the Adolfo Lutz Institute
, the Pasteur Institute
, the University of São Paulo – USP
, the Museum
and Department of Zoology at USP
, the Butantan Institute
, the Botanical Institute – USP
, the Institute of Geosciences, and others. In return, the City Hall collaborates by making material available for research in these institutions. It also maintains partnerships with institutions and programs managed by institutions such as the Research Aid Foundation of the State of São Paulo - Fapesp
, which is responsible for the Biota Program that is engaged in cataloguing and integrating information about the biodiversity in the State of São Paulo.
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- CLIMATE CHANGE AND ECO-ECONOMY
The São Paulo City Hall set up, in 2005, the Municipal Committee of Climatic Changes and Eco-Economy
, with representatives from various municipal departments, aimed at promoting and stimulating actions to minimize the emission of greenhouse gases, as well as considering, among other items: the use of sources of renewable energy, the use of methane gas emitted by landfills, the use of clean fuels, especially in public transportation; the improvement in energy efficiency and rational use (it’s the use that is rational, not the energy) of energy, incentives for motor-free transportation, and the promotion of reducing and recycling trash.
The Committee is also responsible for implementing eco-economic actions, such as: giving continuity to the implementation of the Environmental Quality Municipal Program, supporting trash recycling and implementing the use of recycled paper in the São Paulo City Public Offices, implementing within the City Administration the federal program Environmental Agenda in the Public Administration (A3P), adding equipment for saving water and energy in service charts, building projects under the city's Infrastructure and Building Department, and promoting the constitution of a Permanent Commission of Sustainable Building, which will have the mission of analyzing and adding the items with an environmental focus in the São Paulo City Hall's building projects.
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Brazil is one of the countries with the greatest biodiversity in world. Around 400 species of plants can be found in just one hectare of forest.
For this reason, the majority of lumber consumers are aware of the origin of this raw material, and of the type of pressure on the environment caused by the intensive and constant use of just a few species. The offer of raw material is focused mostly on a few species, which puts a strong pressure on the native forests.
Therefore, since 2005, in the scope of the São Paulo City Hall, the existence of the Document of Forestry Origin (DOF) has become mandatory when purchasing lumber and its by-products, for the purposes of payment for contracted works and services, which ensures that the wood consumed by the city hall is extracted according to the current forest legislation in the country.
The main objective was to increase the sustainable use of lumber and raise the awareness of the construction market about not using wood of illegal or destructive origin, by linking the presentation of certifications which attest to legal compliance of the entire chain of guardianship of lumber and its by-products, in commercial transactions within the city of São Paulo.
For this purpose, a guide, entitled "Madeira: Uso Sustentável na Construção (Lumber: Sustainable Use in Civil Construction) was launched, to show the types of wood that can be used without harming the environment, or destroying rare species, and which present a similar yield in the various stages of the building.
According to Greenpeace, over 60% of the lumber produced in the Country today comes from illegal origin. Of this total, 64% is consumed within Brazil, and of this, 1/3 of this by the public sector.
The São Paulo City Hall also joined the "Cidade Amiga da Amazona" (City Friend of the Amazon), a Program of the Associação Civil Greenpeace, which is committed to combating the use of illegal lumber within the City of São Paulo. By force of law, it is now mandatory to prove the legal origin of the lumber, whether exotic or native, used to make furniture and in the installations provided to the Municipal Public Power. This proof is made by presenting the proof that the lumber supplier is registered with the Federal Technical Registration (CTF) of the federal environmental organ, the Brazilian Institute of the Environment and Renewable Natural Resources – IBAMA.
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- GREEN AND HEALTHY ENVIRONMENTS PROJECT (PAVS)
This is a project for training and mobilizing local agents on the theme of the environment, linking environmental preservation with the promotion of health and social development in the community. The Project is an integrated action of three municipal departments in the City of São Paulo and is supported by the Department of Health and the UNEP. Around US$ 4,500,000.00 will be invested in the project.
A total of 5,700 community health agents and social protection agents from all parts of the city are being trained simultaneously by a group of 82 teachers, especially selected and trained for this purpose. The project will also train 1,800 Pedagogical Coordinators of the Education Municipal Department.
The objective is to strengthen the work of the local agents, enabling them to identify and better understand the environmental problems of their districts and the impacts on the day-to-day lives of the families, mobilizing the community to work towards a greener and healthier environment. There are six strategic themes: Trash, Water and Energy, Biodiversity, Healthy Interaction and Zoonosis, Responsible Consumption, Culture of Peace and Non-violence.
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- URBAN COMMUNITY GARDENS PROJECT
The project is an alternative for the development of local sustainability, which links learning, production, environmental education, and social insertion, with the main objective of forming an Urban and Periurban Agricultural Reference Nucleus in the South of the city, involving rural producers and the community, to generate work and income and make them multipliers of agro-ecological management experiences.
The methodology used in the project has four lines of action: awareness involving the local community, training those involved for effective and sustainable agro-ecological management and planting, training in Solidary Economy, preparing the farmers in the process of social transformation, and following up on the multiplication of the knowledge generated.
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- ENVIRONMENTAL SERVICES
The green areas of São Paulo City offer goods and services such as maintenance and availability of water, contention of erosion and stabilization of steep banks, conservation of the biodiversity, carbon sequestration, and buffering of pollutants, etc.
The implementation of conservation units provides an environmental service, protects the biodiversity, enables scientific research and environmental educational activities, and in some of the categories it is possible to visit and practice sustainable tourism. Taking advantage of and valuing the natural and cultural potential of these protected areas, the development of ecotourism generates jobs and income and emerges as an economic alternative for privileged regions in natural areas.
It is evident that ecotourism is an activity which is on the increase, and that it generates divisions, but it also involves positive and negative impacts on the protected areas. In the city, it has been discussed as a practice for the conservation of the natural ecosystem, especially in the conservation units.
The possibility of creating private conservation units, Private Reserves of the Natural Heritage (RPPN)
, is also an opportunity for the development of ecological tourism, and for payment for the generating of water from these protected areas.
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- PUBLIC PARTICIPATION
The main instrument of participation of the population in decisions relating to environmental issues in the city, is through the Municipal Council on the Environment and Sustainable Development (CADES)
. The CADES is a consultative and deliberative organ on issues related to the preservation, conservation, defense, recovery, and improvement of the natural, built, and work environment within the municipal territory. It is made up of representatives of the public authorities, companies, universities, and non-government organizations.
Another form of community participation is the Administrative Councils of Conservation Units and Municipal Parks, which seek to ensure the participatory and democratic management of these protected areas. The Administrative Councils, which emerged as a strategy of social control, effectively represent a form of political decentralization, and have the objective of expanding the capacity of action and thereby bring the administrative machine closer to the users and citizens. Thus, the Administrative Councils are, constitutionally, instruments of expression, representation, and participation of the population, and have the potential for political transformation.
The fact that the Administrative Councils enable a new standard in the relationship between the State and society promotes the participation of social sectors in the formulation of public policies, presenting access of the spaces where political decisions are taken. The management is based on a participatory methodological approach. Decisions are collectively made, favoring permanent dialog between technical knowledge and popular knowledge.
Participatory management is the basic prerogative of the environmental policies for the municipal conservation units. Thus, representatives of Guarani Indian villages are part of the Administrative Council of the Capivari-Monos APA
in the South of the city.
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- ENVIRONMENTAL EDUCATION
The actions linked to environmental education are carried out by the Municipal Secretarioat of Green Areas and the Environment, which elaborates studies and assessments which seek to incorporate environmental issues with public policies on transport, traffic, education, culture, health, and other areas. For the development of the actions, the Department has, within its structure, the Open University of the Environment and of the Culture of Peace (UMAPAZ)
, the Municipal School of Gardening
, the Municipal Herbarium, the Planetarium
, and the Municipal School of Astrophysics.
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