Climate Change and Biodiversity

AMBIO focuses primarily on promoting climate change mitigation and adaptation activities in marginalised communities in the South of Mexico.

These activities seek to inform smallholders of the long-term implications of climate change, as well to facilitate the creation and implementation of community-scale adaptation plans.

Because every region, and every community faces a unique set of challenges, we work to deliver context-specific help to combat the effects of climate change. However, we generally promote the sustainable management of forests and the implementation of diversified agroforestry ecosystems, which have been shown to promote the resilience of agricultural systems. We believe this work is crucial for the long-term productive viability of Mexico’s rural communities, which also manage over 80% of the nation’s forests.



Another way is the recovery of agricultural areas through the establishment of agroforestry systems (SAFs) that allow the recovery of tree strata, in combination with agricultural activities.

The longest-lived international project in this action strategy is the Scolel'te Program with the capture of carbon through the Payment for Environmental Services.

The communities framed in this Program are committed to conserving and restoring forests through the Payment for Environmental Services (PSA). The design from the communities, with the participation and involvement of the smallholders and their families, are the basis for the development of the project.

We work with the following agroforestry systems:

1.- Improved Fallow: It is a secondary vegetation recovery system (acahual) for the production of wood, firewood and other products for commercialization. It has technical specifications for tropical climates and temperate climates.

2.- Living fence: It consists of sowing timber trees of commercial value for local use around paddocks and milpas. It has technical specifications for tropical climates and temperate climates.

3.- Restoration: Management of degraded forests, resulting from different types of disturbances. It seeks to increase the number of trees that favor natural regeneration.

4.-Taungya: It is a mixed system (productive systems with timber species) that allows during the first years of its establishment to continue using different types of crops that generate additional incomes to the participants.

5.- Coffee Timber: The shade of the planted timber trees is combined with the planting of coffee plantations, for the production of coffee as the main crop.

It also works with avoided deforestation, through Community Forest Management. This focuses on the management and conservation of community forest areas, to reduce forest loss due to anthropogenic activities or natural disasters.


With the design of the Planes Vivos and the monitoring reported to the Plan Vivo Foundation, all the work carried out in the plots of the participants, enter into the scheme of Carbon Offsets Sales in the Voluntary Market at a national and international level.

The sales of the Carbon Offsets are delivered to the participants directly, in the form of Payment for Environmental Services (PSA). This remuneration is administered locally by the participants themselves.

These works have contributed to the increase, conservation and management of forest cover in the Northern, Selva, Meseta Central, Sierra Madre and Central Depression regions of Chiapas. In the same way, work is being carried out in areas surrounding the Protected Natural Areas (NPA's):

- El Ocote Biosphere Reserve (REBISO)

- La Sepultura Biosphere Reserve (REBISE)

- Montes Azules Biosphere Reserve (REBIMA)

- El Triunfo Biosphere Reserve (REBITRI)

- Area of ​​Protection of Natural Resources (APRN) "La

Frailescana "," Na-Ha "," Metzabok "and" Villa Allende "

- National Park (PN) Sumidero Canyon, Lagos de Montebello

- "La Pera" and "Meyapac" state reserves

Some of the results that have been achieved with the implementation of this action strategy are the following:

  • Agroforestry demonstration plots have been created to develop training strategies.
  • They have managed to conserve 5,512 hectares of tropical forests.
  • 453.54 hectares of temperate forest and 1800 hectares of mesophilic mountain forest have been conserved and managed.
  • There are 90 organized work groups.
  • Manuals have been prepared for carbon monitoring, agroforestry systems, thinnings and ecological cook stoves.
  • Participation actively in 4 Advisory Councils of Protected Natural Areas (NPA's).
  • Participation in the Technical Advisory Committee of the REDD + Strategy in Chiapas and at the National Level.
  • Participation in the preparation of the Mexican Standard for the Registration of Forest Carbon Projects and Certification of the Increase in the Carbon Pool (NMX-AA-173-SCFI-2015).

Another issue addressed by AMBIO is Biodiversity, which has been developed in a transversal manner with the actions of the climate change strategy. The objective is to recognize, systematize and revalue the local knowledge of men and women, in terms of biodiversity.

Since 2018, AMBIO has generated a community protocol on Biodiversity, which is a community technical tool to monitor, record and systematize information on the presence and richness of flora and fauna. It has also generated a series of indicators that allow tracking the impacts on biodiversity of the different AMBIO initiatives.

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