Wild about Wilderness

Wild9The longest-running, public international environmental forum will convene from November 6-13, in the city of Merida, Yucatan, to build awareness about pressing environmental issues and celebrate the importance and vitality of wild nature. The event, WILD9, was planned over a two-year period by the Wild Wilderness Congress to connect anyone from wilderness enthusiasts to top-ranked academics and scientists.

One of the many goals of the event is the signing of an international agreement on wilderness between the US, Canada, and Mexico. Emily Loose, WILD’s director of communications, said the agreement would recognize “the importance of wilderness areas and the cooperation between the agencies on management, planning, preservation, and research for the conservation of wilderness.”

WILD9 is open to the anyone, but if you happen to not be in the Yucatan area this week, there are a number of social media options to stay connected. You can watch lectures, including the keynote speech by Dr. Jane Goodall, and sessions live on their USTREAM channel. The Congress will also be tweeting and updating their Flickr photostream throughout the week.

“Government agency employees, private land managers, NGO workers, students, native people, corporate reps, activists and many others will find learning opportunities and celebrations that appeal to them and assist their career,” Loose said.

This year’s meeting is the 9th WILD event but the first in Latin America. Discussions and developments during the meeting will likely drive the location of WILD10.

“WILD9 is in Mexico because of the emerging conservation ethic in Mexico and Latin America – which we saw starting at the 8th World Wilderness Congress in Anchorage, Alaska,” Loose said.

WILD9 is part of a much larger effort to build awareness about the essential social, spiritual, biological and economic benefits of wilderness. Loose emphasized how important it is for citizens to be outspoken advocates for the science behind protecting wilderness.

“Just being equipped with the knowledge that 25% of global green-house gas emissions comes from the destruction of wild-nature can activate someone,” she said.

Visit the WILD9 website for more information.