JGI at Rio+20




The Jane Goodall Institute (JGI) is actively involved in this month’s United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.  The official conference, commonly referred to as “Rio+20,” takes place from June 20 to 22, 2012, but there are a number of side events involving JGI staff that are already underway.

Most notably, Dr. Goodall will be in Rio for two key events:

  • On June 21, Dr. Goodall will co-host a high-level, invitation-only meeting organized by Avoided Deforestation Partners where business, government and civil society participants will discuss public-private partnerships to develop a robust marketplace for products that come from deforestation-free, sustainable agricultural practices.
  • The following day, June 22, Dr. Goodall will be present at the announcement of the Eye on Earth (EoE) Declaration endorsement by more than 20 UN member countries and the UN Major Groups.  To date, 18 countries have endorsed the EoE Declaration.  The EoE Declaration is also endorsed by the World Bank, the Islamic Development Bank, the International Union for the Conservation of Nature, the European Environment Agency, ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability, the Mayor of Rio, the National Geographic Society, Conservation International, the World Wildlife Fund, the Jane Goodall Institute, and private sector companies, including Google, Microsoft and Esri.  

In addition, Dr. Lilian Pintea, JGI’s vice president of conservation science, is already in Rio for a series of meetings hosted by the Eye on Earth Summit, as well as Google Earth Outreach.

On June 14 and June 20, respectively, Dr. Pintea will participate in Eye on Earth panels related to the Eye on Earth Summit’s education and biodiversity initiatives.  He will share how JGI uses DigitalGlobe's high-resolution satellite imagery and GeoDesign and Esri's ArcGIS platform to integrate scientific and indigenous knowledge to support village land-use and conservation planning in Tanzania and the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo.


At a June 18 event hosted by Google Earth Outreach, Dr. Pintea will present remarks detailing how the Jane Goodall Institute in partnership with Google Earth Outreach has been using ODK on Android smartphones and tablets to empower local communities in Africa to better manage and monitor their forests and support their preparedness for REDD.  Made possible with support from the American people through the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and the Royal Norwegian Embassy, JGI is helping local people develop skills, knowledge, ownership, and the ability to monitor village forest reserves using ODK and smartphones in 52 villages in Tanzania.  In Uganda, JGI is using ODK and tablets to conduct detailed inventory and mapping of 1,541 private forest owners in critical chimpanzee corridors between the Bugoma and Budongo Central Forest Reserves.  This work has important implications for the development and implementation of REDD projects in western Uganda. 

In partnership with Woods Hole Research Center and Google Earth Outreach, JGI has also been applying Google Earth Engine technology to build capacity in Tanzania for monitoring biomass and carbon in dry tropical forests and miombo woodlands.  The use of the Google Earth Engine cloud will cut more than 80 percent of data, hardware, training, personnel and time costs and help stakeholders in Tanzania focus their time and resources on generating information products relevant to decision makers.

Be sure to check the JGI website in the coming days for updates from Rio!


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