In Colombia’s Chocó region, ‘river guardians’ protect the rights of the Rio Atrato

By Brian Roewe
January 28, 2022

GLASGOW, SCOTLAND — Thousands of miles and an ocean away from home, Maryury Mosquera Palacios brimmed with passion as she described in a conference hall what it means to be a guardian of the Atrato River in Colombia's Chocó bioregion.

“The river is so important for the communities who live alongside it, along with it,” she said through an interpreter to a small audience inside Hunter Halls at the University of Glasgow in early November. The agronomist and daughter of an Afro-Colombian leader was one of several panelists at a presentation during the first week of the United Nations climate change summit, COP26.

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