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Conservation Unit

Conservation Units are territories dedicated to the maintenance of ecosystems and natural resources for society as a whole, with delimitation, management, and protection by public authorities.

According to federal legislation, a Conservation Unit (UC) is a space with relevant natural characteristics and environmental resources, including fauna, flora, waters, and landscapes, with defined conservation objectives and limits, as well as being legally established, managed, and protected by federal, state or municipal public authorities. There are 12 types of reserves in the National System of Conservation Units (SNUC, Law 9.985/2000), such as National Parks, Extractive Reserves, Environmental Protection Areas, and Private Natural Heritage Reserves. These categories have different parameters regarding a greater or lesser presence of public or private areas within their boundaries or regarding human use and/or presence in these protected spaces. In addition to safeguarding portions of the different natural formations and Brazilian wildlife, including species threatened with extinction, the PAs provide traditional human populations with protection for their way of life and non-destructive economies. Creating and maintaining UCs are strategic tasks for complying with the Federal Constitution and benefiting society as a whole. They are also recognized globally as one of the most effective instruments for maintaining biodiversity. Today there are almost 2,500 federal, state, and municipal UCs in the different biomes and coastal-marine zones.


environmental reserves, protected natural area, ecological reserves

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