Established in 2004, AMA (Agrupación Medio Ambiental) is a nonprofit organization motivated by researching and enacting sustainable tourism practices in Torres del Paine National Park. Hotel Las Torres donates a portion of each reservation to AMA, which is also funded by donations from park visitors and other local companies. Each season, international volunteers also participate in AMA activities.
AMA supports a number of research projects on flora and fauna, organizes community discussions on environmental topics and educates local schoolchildren about sustainability. It also funds forest fire prevention, trail recuperation, reforestation, the implementation of renewable energies and more in and around the park.
Among the organization’s past, present and future ventures are:
Project Bombus dahlbomii:
A proposed project to save the world’s largest bee, the Bombus dahlbomii — also known as the flying mouse. Native to the Patagonia region of Argentina and Chile, the queens of this species can grow to over 1.5 inches in length. Unfortunately, this bee is at risk for extinction. AMA wants to support a campaign that achieves a clear understanding of the present status of the bee in the park and proposes actions to save the species.
Project Huemul Project:
A series of actions to assist in the conservation of the huemul, a native Chilean deer that is endangered and under the legal protection in the Republic of Chile.
Provided comprehensive information of the impact of pumas on local land, livestock and estancia (ranch) activities. Now awaiting a plan of action that will help manage puma habitat in the Magallanes Region.
Andean Condor Flight Activity:
Stemming from the AMA-supported 2010 thesis of Ricardo Guineo at the Universidad Catolica de Chile, this ongoing project studies condor behavior relating to distinct hours of the day and climate factors such as wind.
Permanent Reforestation Platform:
Strives to recover native forest lost in recent years due to fires in Torres del Paine. Actions include creating a tree nursery, employing reforestation specialists, organizing voluntary reforestation programs for tourists wishing to participate, and hosting reforestation school camps.
Lenga Seed Site and 20 Mil Lenga:
AMA, Chile’s Ministry of Environment, school children from the Magallanes region and park volunteers are working together to collect and replant seeds of the native Lenga trees lost due to forest fires.