One planet, Many people
Latin America and the Caribbean Atlas of our Changing Environment
Latin America and the Caribbean is the richest region of the planet in terms of its biological diversity that ranges from marmosets, jaguars and parrots to orchids, palms and cacao trees. This diversity is sustained by the abundance of its ecosystems such as tropical forests and wealth in natural resources and reflected too in the mosaic of cultures and people that live there. The environment of Latin America and the Caribbean also reflects the interaction between human activities and natural processes, both past and present. These sometimes dramatic environmental changes can often be best glimpsed from space and are chronicled here in the first ever Latin America and the Caribbean Atlas of our Changing Environment based on remotely sensed images acquired by different satellites over many years. The images presented spotlight the conversion of forest to agricultural land, urbanization, destruction and degradation of mangroves, mining activities and melting glaciers. They also highlight increasing vulnerability in some areas of the region as a result of this accelerating environmental change.