The Sierra Gorda is a unique transition zone between three bio-regions and varied altitudes, every ecosystem of megadiverse Mexico is found there, except for the marine.
The only Biosphere Reserve in Mexico to be decreed in response to widespread local consensus - in May 1997, one third of Queretaro State became a federal protected area incorporating 640 communities and 93,000 people within the Sierra Gorda Biosphere Reserve, the second most-populated protected area in the country.
Conservation takes place on private property that constitutes 97% of the 1 million acres (384,567 hectares)of the Sierra Gorda Biosphere Reserve.
The Sierra Gorda Biosphere Reserve is the largest natural protected area in Mexico managed through invested community participation.
Partnering with the local population to protect biodiversity Sierra Gorda´s
rich mountains and narrow valleys are home to over 600 communities living in
extreme poverty and a marked lack of employment alternatives.
Dependent on poor subsistence crops and livestock and remittances from the USA, the lack of skills and resources has led to the imminent degradation of these sanctuaries.
Without opportunities for making a living locally, the most enterprising individuals, mostly men and even whole families (an estimated 40% of the regional population), continue to risk their lives and leave their families for gainful employment in the United States, thus unraveling the local socioeconomic and socio-cultural fabric of this rural region.
Long live Sierra Gorda
Sierra Gorda's rich mountains and narrow valleys are in the hands of communities living in extreme poverty that, while aware of their interdependence with Nature, lack the skills and the resources to arrest the imminent degradation of these sanctuaries and return them to health.
Without opportunities for employment the most enterprising individuals, mostly men and even whole families, continue to risk their lives and leave their families for gainful employment in the United States, thus unraveling the local socioeconomic and socio-cultural fabric of this mountainous region.
In 2001 a local partner, Bosque Sustentable A.C., was founded and continues to carry
out these and related economic development activities.
Long Term Achievements in Sierra Gorda