Mexico & Central America

On the Front Lines of Conservation

What's at Stake

Mexico and Central America are world leaders in granting land rights to local and indigenous people—a crucial step in protecting forests. But even with significant gains in rights, forest communities are facing threats from agricultural expansion, illegal loggers, and drug traffickers.

Farmer in coffee field in Guatemala

Farmer in a coffee field in Guatemala

On the Front Lines of Climate Change

Farmers in Mexico and Central America are already dealing with the effects of climate change: shorter growing seasons, unpredictable rainfall, and a surge in plant diseases and pests. Crops like coffee and bananas could become rare delicacies in the future without bold climate action—but the livelihoods and well-being of farming communities are in jeopardy now.

Pair of scarlet macaws (Ara macao)

Pair of scarlet macaws (Ara macao)

Photo credit: Sergio Izquierdo

The Scarlet Macaw in Peril

The largest parrot in the Neotropics, the scarlet macaw, is under threat in Mexico and Central America. The species is imperiled by the destruction of its rainforest habitat as well as by the illegal pet trade. The macaw is just one of many magnificent animal species at risk from habitat destruction, including the jaguar, the night monkey, and the resplendent quetzal, Guatemala's national bird.

Our Work

Our Work

In a region hard hit by climate change, the Rainforest Alliance focuses on advancing community forestry, sustainable agriculture, ecotourism, and environmental education to defend vulnerable landscapes and support rural communities.

José Román Carrera
Photo credit: Sergio Izquierdo

Conservation Superhero José Román Carrera

Throughout the 1990s, Carrera endured several attempts on his life and death threats in response to his work to establish Guatemala's Maya Biosphere Reserve. Today, Carrera works for the Rainforest Alliance, supporting forest concessions all over Latin America with the same determination—and thankfully, fewer death threats.

Learn more about our key projects in this region.
Our Impact

Our Impact

Our impacts in Mexico and Central America are nothing short of stunning: In areas managed by our partner communities in Guatemala's Maya Biosphere Reserve, for example, logging has remained at almost zero since 2001—remarkable given that adjacent areas suffer some of the worst deforestation rates in the Americas.

car equivalent annual emissions of greenhouse gases removed or avoided by CNCG project

27,000 cars

equivalent annual emissions of greenhouse gases removed from the atmosphere

Growing Coffee, Fighting Climate Change

We provided technical assistance to a group of coffee farmers in Oaxaca, Mexico, who launched an agroforestry project to remove 130,000 tons of greenhouse gas emissions (the annual emissions of 27,000 cars) from the atmosphere over 30 years through reforestation of degraded land.

Student icon

12,806 students

have studied our environmental curriculum in Mexico and Guatemala

Spreading Conservation Awareness Through Education

We not only provide training and curricula to teachers in southern Mexico and Guatemala, but we also help build local networks so educators can sustain this vital environmental education work in their communities for years to come.

Learn more ways we are achieving real results.
Get Involved

Get Involved

Join us to help rebalance the earth.

Honey production at the Retalteco cooperative in Las Cruces, Petén - photo by Sergio Izquierdo

Learn more about how we advance climate resilience, improved livelihoods, and conservation in communities throughout Latin America.

Grecia Magdalena Lopez and her son - photo by Sergio Izquierdo

We’re helping to empower forest-dependent communities to conserve the stunning landscape and biodiversity of the Maya Biosphere Reserve in Guatemala.

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