Last year, we blogged about a worrisome plan for a proposed highway/railway project that would traverse the Peruvian Amazon and threaten the lives and livelihoods of indigenous peoples, including peoples living in voluntary isolation. This planned highway/railway, the Interconexíon vial Pucallpa-Cruzeiro do Sol, has been closely watched by a group of indigenous leaders and civil society organizations, called the Grupo Regional de Monitoreo de Megaproyectos de Ucayali.
We were excited to learn that the Grupo de Monitoreo recently launched a new website and blog dedicated to raising awareness around the project and its potential impacts. One of the first stories highlighted on the new website is a recent report published by the Instituto de Bien Común (IBC) which brings together eye witness accounts and testimonials attesting to the presence of peoples living in voluntary isolation in and around the proposed path of the project. Because one of the most common tactics employed by governments to justify the construction of megaprojects that might potentially threaten peoples living in voluntary isolation is to simply insist that they do not exist, and thus no harm can be done to them, this new report and website will likely become critical tools in the struggle against the project.