Argentina's Paraná delta under threat
Credit: Christian Ostrosky/Flickr

Argentina's wetlands under threat from new development projects

In Argentina's Paraná delta, known as "Earth's fourth lung," the push for luxury real estate threatens the region's diverse ecosystems and local communities, with private interests prioritizing spas and helipads over environmental and social health.

Harriet Barber reports for The Guardian.


In short:

  • The Paraná delta, a vital environmental and biological reservoir, faces severe threats from overdevelopment, including habitat destruction and pollution.
  • Real estate developers are displacing local communities and altering the landscape with luxury homes and gated communities, impacting traditional livelihoods.
  • Efforts to protect these wetlands are hampered by stalled legislation in Congress, reflecting a broader undervaluing of wetlands by society and political interests.

Key quote:

"We are the fourth lung of the world. Our delta gives oxygen to the planet, but today, they are damaging it terribly."

— Juan Carlos García, islander and descendant of the Indigenous Guaraní people

Why this matters:

The ongoing conflict in the Paraná delta serves as a microcosm of global environmental challenges, underscoring the need for sustainable development practices that consider health outcomes and preserve ecological integrity. We are reminded once again that in the battle for environmental conservation, "victories" are seldom permanent and forever subject to the politics of the moment.

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