PRESERVING SITES AND SPECIES
Emergency in the Papoua New Guinea forest
On February 28 and March 4, 2018, two violent earthquakes of magnitude 7.5 shook the Mount Bosavi in Papua New Guinea. On April 7 a third earthquake of magnitude 6.8 added to the ecological and sanitary disaster in these equatorial lands.
The inhabitants of the forest, 14 clans of the nomadic Kasua tribe are in great danger. Their houses on stilts and their crop-gardens have been completely wiped out. This tribe is one of the last nomadic people of the Papuan Forest. They value a community life-style and believe in equality between all living creatures of the forest. They are one of the last autonomous societies to live in perfect symbiosis with the forest.
The Art-Borescence association has decided to carry out a solidarity action in five steps:
- Purchase of supplies: emergency food supplies, medical care, water collectors, organic seeds, horticultural equipment, plant cuttings…
- Routing of supplies.
- Reception and distribution of supplies by the Kasua Reserve Steering Committee.
- Reconstruction of the forest way of life on each clan territory.
- Organization of educational workshops for children and live entertainment.
The Fondation Iris has brought its financial support to this project.
Integrating indigenous knowledge
to contemporary forest management practices
The forested areas around the Hkakaborazi Landscape, in Kachin State in the northernmost part of Myanmar, are home to a significant population of Rawang people. The group largely leads a subsistence lifestyle through swidden agriculture and the use of non-timber forest products. The Rawang have historically had a harmonious relationship with their environment, contributing to preserving the forest and its ecosystems. Their current status in the forest is now tense due to a modern management framework which does not fully recognize their traditional rights, practices and way of life and thus threatens their livelihoods.
As the Government of Myanmar is in the process of preparing a nomination for the Hkakaborazi Landscape to the World Heritage List, the need to integrate traditional practices and involvement of local communities is a priority issue.
This is why the UNESCO World Heritage Centre, in partnership with Fondation Iris, started a project seeking :
to generate understanding about indigenous knowledge on forest management among the Rawang in Myanmar,
to identify obstacles for the communities to practice their indigenous knowledge,
to provide recommendations for policy makers to utilize indigenous knowledge in contemporary forest management practices.
The future of the world's high mountain
In 2010, the Sustainable Summits conference was launched by the American Alpine Club with the primary goal of sharing solutions for managing human waste in the high mountain peaks around the world. At the Golden, Colorado conference in 2014, and again in 2016 at Aoraki / Mount Cook National Park, New Zealand, the scope was broadened to include the impacts of climate change and access issues on the high mountains. These conferences have drawn representation from every continent.
In 2018, for three days, land managers, researchers, representatives from NGOs and non-profit organizations, outdoor companies, guides and mountaineers from around the world will join together in Chamonix-Mont-Blanc. They will share their knowledge and experience and propose solutions for the future of our high mountains.
Fondation Iris financially support this event.
Protecting the lemurs of Madagascar
Charismatic symbol of the island-continent, you can only find lemurs in Madagascar. These past few years, deforestation and poaching have made lemurs the most endangered group of mammals on earth with 99% of the species – estimated at more than 100 – in critical danger.
The action plan for lemurs of the IUCN Species Survival Commission's Primate Specialist Group has identified 30 primary sites for conservation operations. The programme “SOS Lemur” closely lines up with this plan.
Four of these projects are supported financially by Fondation Iris.
Inventory of glacial lakes at risk in Nepal
A very violent earthquake struck Nepal on the 25th April 2015 – 7.8 on Richter’s scale. Since then, it has been followed by many after-shocks. All over the region, earthquakes have renewed natural hazards: avalanches, landslide, rock falls, glacial lakes breach…
The Nepalese government’s hydrological and meteorological service (DHM) has asked the
"Des Géorisques et Des Hommes" association to take urgent action to carry out diagnostic visits and to estimate and prioritize the risk of 20 to 25 lakes which are considered at high risk of rupture.
Fondation Iris is supporting this study which will take place end of summer 2015.
Seventh European Botanic Gardens Congress
The National Natural History Museum of Paris, an institution recognized for the excellence of its expertise, and its program of conservation, research and dissemination of scientific knowledge, will host the Seventh European Botanic Gardens Congress for the first time in France. It will be held in Paris during July 6-10, 2015.
Fondation Iris provides financial support to strengthen the organization of the congress which aims at protecting plant biodiversity and highlighting the role of botanical gardens in plant conservation and biodiversity preservation awareness.
Sustainable tourism for
UNESCO World Heritage
La planification et la gestion durable du tourisme est un des défis les plus urgents pour le futur de la Convention du patrimoine mondial de l'UNESCO.
Les responsables de sites n'ont souvent pas en leur possession les outils et le savoir faire pour gérer efficacement le tourisme, optimiser ses effets et minimiser l'impact négatif.
En partenariat avec l'UNESCO, la Fondation Iris aide financièrement à développer les outils qui permettront de changer la manière de gérer le tourisme sur les sites du patrimoine mondial ; ces outils collaboratifs et évolutifs ont pour but de propager les idées innovantes et les expériences concluantes auprès des instances locales et nationales chargées de la gestion des sites.
around the Villa Viardot in Bougival
© FRANCOISE BRENCKMANN
In 2013, Fondation Iris funded an outdoor art exhibition in the Park of the Villa Viardot in Bougival, France. Located in front of the house where Bizet composed Carmen, at the foot of the "Hill of the Impressionists", this 4-hectare property, with a great landscape and cultural value, is the setting of the villa of Pauline Viardot singer, and of the dacha of Ivan Turgenev writer.
The works by the Swiss artist Andreas Kressig, echoing music and safeguard of the site, invited visitors to better explore the park.
A wardrobe, placed in the rose garden is exposed to the weather, in the same way the villa is abandoned, waiting for a rescue. A wall is studded with DVDs with rainbow reflections: musical footsteps reminiscent of the musicians who lived and played in the Villa. A necklace of golden safety barriers surrounding the villa: transfiguration barriers that pass from a public protection function to the defense of the site at risk function.