Skip to main content

WHERE WE REPORT


Translate page with Google

Story Publication logo September 7, 2020

José Gregorio: Either We Preserve the Amazon, or the Forest Gets Revenge (Portuguese)

Country:

Authors:
×
José Gregorio, leader of the Guardia Indígena Ambiental (Indigenous Environmental Guard), poses for a portrait. The photo shows a logo on the front of his shirt representing his organization, which protects the Amazon forest surrounding the Amacuyaco River. Image by Pablo Albarenga. Colombia, 2020.
English

In the heart of a dark triangle in the deep rainforest lie three border towns: Leticia (Colombia)...

author #1 image author #2 image
Multiple Authors
colombia-river-defenders
Image by Pablo Albarenga. Brazil, 2020.

Led by José Gregorio Vásquez, a patrol unit from the Indigenous environmental guard traces the Amacayacu River in the Colombian Amazon. Minus José, who is over 40 years old, the members of the environmental guard comprise Indigenous youth — but they all display the serenity and poise of experience when they manage to intercept a suspicious canoe that is traveling stealthily upriver.

It's a routine inspection, but tension is not spared. The two occupants of the canoe with a small Honda engine that looks like it just came from the shop have well-rehearsed responses to the check-up. The answers are short, laconic. You can tell they don't want to start conversation. They are nervous, in a hurry to shake off the forest guardians.

To read the full story in Portuguese, click here.

“Ou preservamos a floresta ou ela se vingará”: a patrulha indígena na Amazônia colombiana

Liderada por José Gregorio, uma patrulha indígena da guarda ambiental sobe o rio Amacayacu, na Amazônia colombiana. Com exceção dele, que agora está na casa dos 40, todos os membros da guarda ambiental são muito jovens, embora mostrem grande serenidade e equilíbrio quando alcançam e interceptam uma canoa suspeita de estar navegando furtivamente rio acima.

É uma inspeção de rotina, mas não sem tensão. Os dois ocupantes do barco, movido por um pequeno motor Honda que parece ter acabado de sair da loja, têm as respostas bem ensaiadas: elas são curtas, lacônicas. Mas é possível notar que não querem conversa. Eles estão nervosos, com pressa de sair da presença dos guardas.