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close this bookAgricultural Expansion and Pioneer Settlements in the Humid Tropics (UNU, 1988, 305 pages)
close this folder16. Organized settlement on the Amazon frontier: The Caquetá project in Colombia
View the document(introduction...)
View the documentThe project
View the documentProject characteristics
View the documentTarget population
View the documentDevelopment or stabilizing strategy
View the documentThe environmental issue in Colombia
View the documentMaterial accomplishments of Phase II
View the documentProject investment and cost
View the documentSocio-political events in the project area
View the documentStability of the production model
View the documentEnvironmental effects
View the documentEnvironmental costs
View the documentFrontier stabilization alternatives
View the documentFrontier management technology

Environmental effects

Although it seems that the project provided an alternative to deter forest clearing on a single farm basis, it is also clear that the aggregate area of forest cut, undoubtedly accelerated by the project, has had a greater environmental impact on the 1.8 million hectares, as evidenced by an unprecedented series of droughts and floods, the reduction by half of the navigation period of the area's main rivers, and the virtual disappearance, if not extinction, of some species of fauna.

These effects have had a negative economic impact on the region, especially on the poorer settlers, and, according to both community leaders and some government officials, "the area is showing some signs of desertification."