Earth Day is a global celebration that reminds us to take care of the planet we live on. In Guatemala, this day is particularly significant as the country is home to some of the world’s most spectacular natural wonders.
From the ancient ruins of Tikal to the lush rainforests of the Peten, Guatemala is a country that is blessed with an abundance of natural beauty.
This year, as we celebrate Earth Day, we are reflecting on the progress made toward protecting the environment in Guatemala. In recent years, the country has made significant strides in promoting sustainability and reducing its carbon footprint. Here are some of the key initiatives that have contributed to this progress:
- Sustainable tourism: Guatemala has made great efforts to promote sustainable tourism, which aims to minimize the negative impact of tourism on the environment and local communities. This includes promoting eco-friendly accommodations, responsible travel practices, and conservation efforts.
- Renewable energy: The country has also made significant investments in renewable energy sources such as solar, wind, and hydropower. According to a report by the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) in 2020, renewable energy sources accounted for about 58% of the country's total electricity supply in 2019.
- Hydropower is the largest source of renewable energy in Guatemala, accounting for about 20% of total electricity generation.
- Rural homesteading: This movement, which is near and dear to our hearts at Seeds for a Future, is promoted through community programs, and encourages people to live off the land and create sustainable, self-sufficient opportunities to grow nutritious ingredients for rural households. By growing culturally-appropriate food from native seeds, embracing regenerative practices, and reducing their carbon footprint, homesteaders within rural communities are taking a proactive approach to protecting the environment.
- Conservation efforts: Guatemala has a rich cultural and natural heritage, and the country has made great efforts to protect its diverse ecosystems and endangered species. This includes the creation of national parks, wildlife reserves, and protected areas.
- Community initiatives: Many communities in Guatemala have taken it upon themselves to promote sustainable practices and protect their local environment. This includes initiatives such as community gardens, waste reduction programs, and eco-tourism projects.
While there is still much work to be done in protecting the environment in Guatemala, the progress that has been made is truly remarkable. This Earth Day, we can all join together to celebrate this progress and commit to doing our part to protect the planet. Whether it’s through small lifestyle changes, supporting sustainable initiatives, or advocating for environmental policies, every action we take can make a difference in preserving the natural wonders of Guatemala and the world for generations to come.