A community in northern Guatemala is fighting against the force of nature and against the expansion of palm oil.
Jody García writes in Climate Tracker about a community that is increasingly trapped, literally, by the effects of climate change, on the one hand, and big business, in the form of palm oil plantations, on the other.
Las Mercedes is a small and poor town located in Chisec, Alta Verapaz, in northern Guatemala. The community is surrounded by the Chixoy river, the country’s third-largest river and a smaller river called Chiribiscal.
The population lives by harvesting corn and beans. Each winter, they fight to keep their houses and their harvest standing because the river levels rise and affect their belongings. The families are still there despite the tragedy of each winter’s river level rise: they have nowhere else to go.
The community also lives in a constant struggle to defend its territory from palm oil companies, in this case Industrias Chiquibul.
You can read the full article, including links and photographs here, David vs Goliath in Guatemala: how palm oil companies encroach on indigenous land.
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