Climate Champion, Mr Raoni Metyktire, Climate Champion, Luc Hoffmann, Luc Hoffmann Institute
Climate Champ–Mr. Ropni Metyktire, Climate Champ–Luc Hoffmann, Luc Hoffmann Institute
CLIMATE CHAMPION, CHIEF RAONI METYKTIRE
Meet Chief Raoni Metyktire (born in 1932). He is an Indigenous Brazilian leader and environmentalist, and a chief of the Kayapo people. They are a Brazilian Indigenous group from the plain lands of the Mato Grosso and Pará in Brazil, south of the Amazon River and along Xingu River and its tributaries. Chief Raoni is internationally famous as a living symbol of the fight for the preservation of the Amazon rainforest and indigenous culture. Something he’s done since his tribe first encountered white people back in 1954.
In 1978, French documentarian Jean-Pierre Dutilleux made the documentary film “Raoni”, Marlon Brando, known for his support of Native American people, agreed to appear for no salary in “Raoni’s” opening sequence.That film and Brazilian media’s sudden interest made Raoni the banner-bearer of the fight for the preservation of the Amazon rainforest. Thus began his crusade to save the Amazaon Rainforest, which had been jeopardized by illegal deforestation, the increasing cultivation of soya beans, and the use of hydroelectric dams for the generation of electricity.
Raoni gained international attention thanks to musician Sting, who came to meet him in the Xingu in November 1987. On October 12, 1988, Sting participated with Raoni in a press conference prior to the Sao Paulo show of the ‘Human Rights Now!’ Amnesty International tour. After this event, Sting, his wife Trudie Styler, and Jean-Pierre Dutilleux founded the Rainforest Foundation. Its initial purpose was to support Raoni’s projects, the first being the demarcation of Kayapos territory threatened by invasion.
Raoni visited 17 countries with Sting from April to June 1989. The very successful campaign gave him the opportunity to raise awareness around the world about the deforestation. Twelve rainforest foundations were created to raise funds for the establishment of a huge national park in the Rio Xingu River region, in Para and Mato Grosso Brazilian states. Raoni’s dream was to unite the five demarcated indigenous territories (Baú, Kaiapó, Panará, Kapôt Jarina, Bàdjumkôre) with then undemarcated Mekragnotire lands. Along with the adjoining Xingu National Park, the united indigenous lands would cover approximately 180000 km2 (nearly one-third the area of France).
In 1993, funds raised worldwide helped to make Raoni’s dream a reality. The Xingu indigenous lands were reunited, creating one of the world’s most important rainforest reserves. In September 2011, Chief Raoni was made an honorary citizen of Paris by Paris mayor Bertrand Delanoë, and received the medal of the French National Assembly from Nicolas Perruchot of France’s National Assembly. In 2019, a group of environmentalists and anthropologists put his name forward as a candidate for the 2020 Nobel Peace Prize for his lifetime defense of the forest.
Why does Chief Raoni Metyktire matter to us? Simply put, if it weren’t for him, we might never have known about devastating Amazon Rainforest deforestation, or a the very least, we would have known about it decades later. And for that he deserves our utmost respect, and perhaps a Nobel Prize, too!
CLIMATE CHAMPION, LUC HOFFMANN
One of the extraordinary co-founders of World Wildlife Fund was climate champion, Dr. Luc Hoffman. Hans Lukas “Luc” Hoffmann was a Swiss ornithologist, conservationist, and philanthropist. In 1951, Hoffman set up the Tour du Valat biological station in France’s Camargue region, a research institute devoted to the study and management of wetlands. Along with fellow researchers at Tour du Valat, he conducted the early studies of waterbird populations and wetland ecology. In 1961, he helped co-found and became WWF International’s first Vice-President, a position that he held until 1988.
For over 60 years, Dr Luc Hoffmann helped catalyze new ideas and effective approaches to nature conservation. In addition to the WWF, he also served as Director of Wetlands International, Vice-President of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and established the Fondation Internationale du Banc d’Arguin in West Africa. He was a key figure in the original fight to save Spain’s Coto Doñana and a driving force behind the Ramsar Convention on wetlands.
Hoffman died at age 93 in 2016, so why does he matter to us all these years later? As International Union for Conservation of Nature Director General Inger Andersen once said, “Dr Hoffmann is an extraordinary man whose dedication to nature conservation was an inspiration to many, both within and beyond the conservation community. He is in great part responsible for shaping the conservation movement as it exists today.”
Throughout his life, Dr Hoffmann received numerous international accolades and awards, including the French Legion of Honor and the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation award for biodiversity conservation. To honor his pioneering role in nature conservation, IUCN’s Commission on Ecosystem Management created the Luc Hoffmann Award, which recognizes individuals who have made an exceptional contribution to conserving ecosystems.
THE LUC HOFFMANN INSTITUTE
The Luc Hoffmann Institute aims to be the world’s leading catalyst for this change, incubating the ideas that will make it happen. It was founded in 2012, by Luc Hoffmann’s MAVA Foundation, along with WWF International. The Luc Hoffmann Institute follows the principles of systems thinking, convening and co-creation to incubate and accelerate new ideas and approaches that will deliver significant gains for biodiversity.
How? The institute’s extensive work with the ‘Three Horizons Approach’ supports the assertion that there is a future horizon of biodiversity conservation that can only be reached through innovative ideas and approaches. The Three Horizons Approach was pioneered by the consulting firm McKinsey, and is defined as an effective method for making sense of and facilitating cultural transformation and exploring innovation and wise action.
IOW, the three horizons are depicted on a graph as the change from the established pattern of the first horizon via the transition activity of the second horizon to the emergence of fundamentally new patters in the third occurs. Why does the Luc Hoffmann Institute matter to us? Because it supports the assertion that there is a future horizon of biodiversity conservation that can only be reached through innovative ideas and approaches.
And because LHI follows the three principles of systems thinking, convening and co-creation, it helps incubate and accelerate new ideas and approaches that will deliver significant gains for biodiversity. And biodiversity is a key component to helping reduce the worst impacts of climate change.