Welcome to the Neotropical Ecology: Science for Empowerment Lab!

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The Neotropical Ecology Lab members share concerns about environmental degradation and climate justice and an interest in advancing solutions agendas. It has been said that knowledge is power. As a research group, we strive to use science and knowledge co-creation to empower communities, decision-makers, entrepreneurs and other stakeholders on the road towards sustainable presents and futures.

Hands holding the earth

Research Themes​​​​​

Climate Solutions and Sustainability Transitions: The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) estimates that approximately a decade remains to prevent a rise in global temperature of 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels. This demands reducing global anthropogenic CO2 emissions 45% below 2010 levels by 2030. Such a transition to sustainability will require dramatic transformations that not only entail new technologies but policy, regulatory, political, social and cultural changes across societies. Many members of the Lab work on biological aspects of nature-based solutions to climate change, including agroforestry, reforestation and forest conservation. Others work more broadly on sustainability transitions and low-carbon futures in Canada, with a recent emphasis on Small- and Medium-Size Enterprises.

 Solutions from Canadian Scholars cover page

Community Land Use & Livelihoods: Throughout much of Latin America, Indigenous Peoples are custodians of large areas of forests upon which they depend for their livelihoods and cultural practices. The Lab recognizes that social and ecological systems are intricately intertwined. Because of our focus on social-ecological systems, we consider social justice, equity and livelihoods as fundamental parts of climate solutions and transitions to sustainability.

Catherine Potvin presenting a map in an Emberá community, Panama

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