On June 10th, Perry Center professor Patrick Paterson participated in the Colombian environmental summit in Villavicencio. The event, attended by more than 125 senior dignitaries from 20 countries, marked the launch of Campaña Artemisa, Colombia’s initiative to protect its biodiversity, fresh water sources, reduce deforestation, and comply with pledges the country made at the COP26 summit in Glasgow, Scotland in November 2021.
Colombia is doing its part on behalf of the international community to mitigate the effects of climate change. In Scotland, the Duque government pledged to reduce its carbon emissions by 51% by the year 2030; be carbon neutral by 2050; declare 30% of its national territory as “protected;” and reduce deforestation in national territory to zero by 2030. Campaña Artemisa is a Ministry of Defense initiative to support other government institutions tasked with protecting the natural resources of the country in 59 national natural parks.
Dr. Paterson moderated two panels during the day-long discussion. The first panel included panelists General Luis Fernando Navarro, Commander of the Colombian Armed Forces; General Jorge Luis Vargas, Director General of the Colombian National Police; and Carlos Eduardo Correa, Minister of the Environment and Sustainable Development.
The second panel included international environmental specialists from Argentina, Brazil, Spain, and the United States. Colombian Minister of Defense Diego Molano hosted the conference and made both opening and closing remarks.