Patagonia National Park
| Argentina |
Area of Patagonia National Park: 130,499 acres (52,811 hectares)
Projected total area: 691,895 acres (280,000 hectares)
Estimated Carbon Storage: 114.8 million metric tonnes
Patagonia National Park in Argentina was created with the vision of implementing a vast wildlife corridor between the Pacific and Atlantic basins, covering one of the most expansive plateaus in Patagonia and thus protecting globally imperiled endemic species. One of the wildest parts of Patagonia, the area hosts the only meseta (not montane) glacier in South America as well as high-elevation plateau lagoons that support nesting colonies of the nearly extinct hooded grebe. Around the plateau there are hundreds of petroglyphs made by ancestral guanaco hunters. The park’s eastern side contains a significant portion of the Pinturas (“Paintings”) River canyon, where the world heritage site “Cueva de las Manos” (“Cave of the Hands”) is found. The rock art at the site dates from between 11,000 and 1,000 years ago, indicating ten thousand years of practically continuous occupation. The park also includes frontage on Buenos Aires and Pueyrredón lakes, two of the area’s most beautiful water bodies.
Tompkins Conservation conceived the park idea, and its Argentine affiliate organizations raised private funding to acquire key properties that could be aggregated and donated to the National Parks Administration. CLT (now Rewilding Argentina) also joined the coalition of NGOs that successfully advocated for the park’s designation by Congress in 2014.