After 91 days, 175 flying hours and 23 countries, Peter Wilson and Robin Doten landed back safely in West Palm Beach on the 3rd March 2019. During this 17,500 nm trip, they became the first helicopter to fly round trip around Latin America from West Palm Beach to Puerto Williams. The journey took them across the Caribbean, South America and Central America: the beaches and reefs; the Amazon River and Rainforest; the Moxos Plain and the Pantanal; the Patagonia Steppe, Tierra del Fuego, the Southern Icecap, glaciers, and volcanoes; the Atacama and Sechura Deserts; an earthquake in Ecuador; and spectacular wildlife including, Condor, Giant River Otters and the penguins! Peter exclaimed that it was “absolutely breath-taking scenery throughout”. The full trip route can be seen below thanks to his satellite beacon transmitting throughout the trip.
We are thrilled that Three Journeys Round offset the carbon footprint of their entire journey through financing our Tambopata-Bahuaja Biodiversity Reserve project that works to conserve rainforest in the Peruvian Amazon. And also that Peter and Robin were able to actually visit this project on their trip.
In the December of 2018, Peter and Robin met with AIDER, our implementing partner on the ground, to learn about and seethe work on the ground that they helped to support. Peter said that he now understands the passion they have for their work with farmers on the drivers of deforestation and the application of carbon credits for protecting the forest. Peter was able to see our conservation model working in practice and how important it is, especially when discussing the projections of deforestation if the project did not address the drivers on the ground.
After seeing this project in action, Peter said, “it is a continuous hard slog and AIDER need to cover the costs of their support to the farmers in the buffer zone and the guides in the protected areas as well as the researchers. For me this just shows the delicate balance between viable sustainable development and keeping the forests, ecosystems and communities intact for the future of mankind.”
Throughout his trip, Peter documented both the stunning scenery but also deforestation across the Amazon, including close to Puerto Maldonado, the nearest city to our Tambopata project, and also in Guyana, Suriname, French Guiana and Brazil to name a few. This shows the urgent need for conservation financing to address deforestation on the ground across the region.