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Background: The threats facing Ecuador’s Yasunı́ National Park are emblematic of those confronting the greater western Amazon, one of the world’s last high-biodiversity wilderness areas. Notably, the country’s second largest untapped oil reserves—called ‘‘ITT’’—lie beneath an intact, remote section of the park. The conservation significance of Yasunı́ may(More)
Due to rising energy demands and abundant untapped potential, hydropower projects are rapidly increasing in the Neotropics. This is especially true in the wet and rugged Andean Amazon, where regional governments are prioritizing new hydroelectric dams as the centerpiece of long-term energy plans. However, the current planning for hydropower lacks adequate(More)
BACKGROUND The western Amazon is the most biologically rich part of the Amazon basin and is home to a great diversity of indigenous ethnic groups, including some of the world's last uncontacted peoples living in voluntary isolation. Unlike the eastern Brazilian Amazon, it is still a largely intact ecosystem. Underlying this landscape are large reserves of(More)
Collinsia verna, blue-eyed Mary, has floral attributes of an outcrossing species, yet most flowers readily self-pollinate under greenhouse conditions. Here we describe the mechanism of self-pollination in C. verna via changes in relative positions of the stigma and anthers and late timing of receptivity, resulting in delayed selfing. Each flower contains(More)
BACKGROUND The threats facing Ecuador's Yasuní National Park are emblematic of those confronting the greater western Amazon, one of the world's last high-biodiversity wilderness areas. Notably, the country's second largest untapped oil reserves--called "ITT"--lie beneath an intact, remote section of the park. The conservation significance of Yasuní may(More)
Ecuador’s Yasunı́ Man and the Biosphere Reserve—located at the intersection of the Amazon, the Andes mountains, and the equator—is home to extraordinary biodiversity and a recently contacted Amazonian indigenous group known as the Waorani (or Huaorani). Relatives of the Waorani, the Tagaeri and Taromenane, still live in voluntary isolation deep in the(More)
The Peruvian Amazon is home to extraordinary biological and cultural diversity, and vast swaths of this mega-diverse region remain largely intact. Recent analysis indicates, however, that the rapid proliferation of oil and gas exploration zones now threatens the region’s biodiversity, indigenous peoples, and wilderness areas. To better elucidate this(More)
The western Amazon continues to be an active and controversial zone of hydrocarbon exploration and production. We argue for the urgent need to implement best practices to reduce the negative environmental and social impacts associated with the sector. Here, we present a three-part study aimed at resolving the major obstacles impeding the advancement of best(More)
The Peruvian Amazon is an important arena in global efforts to promote sustainable logging in the tropics. Despite recent efforts to achieve sustainability, such as provisions in the US-Peru Trade Promotion Agreement, illegal logging continues to plague the region. We present evidence that Peru's legal logging concession system is enabling the widespread(More)