Protecting rivers and defending the rights of the communities that depend on them

Victory for the Marañón River!

Victory for Maranon River

In a landmark ruling, a Peruvian court recognized the rights of the Marañón River and the Indigenous communities as its guardians.

“The Nauta court’s decision marks a major win for river conservation in Peru, affirming the intrinsic value of the Marañón River and granting it the status of a Subject of Rights. This milestone underscores the vital impact of community-led advocacy in safeguarding river ecosystems and sets a crucial precedent for river conservation efforts globally. By recognizing the Marañón River as a Subject of Rights, this decision is significant not only in terms of environmental protection but also in advancing the rights of nature and the rights of rivers. It establishes a groundbreaking legal framework that acknowledges the inherent rights of natural entities, paving the way for similar legal recognition and protection of rivers worldwide.” – Monti Aguirre, Latin America Director of International Rivers


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Our Rivers, Our Water Future

Since 1985, International Rivers has been at the heart of the global movement to ensure river-dependent communities’ voices are heard and their rights are respected.

Our Approach

Rivers are the arteries of the earth, supporting the highest rate of biodiversity compared to any other ecosystem and providing for the livelihoods of millions of local, indigenous and traditional peoples. Rivers are also under extreme threat, with less than 10% of the world’s river basins protected.

International Rivers strengthens movements of communities and civil society at the forefront of defending rivers by:

  • Undertaking investigative research to generate robust data and evidence to inform policies and campaigns.
  • Remaining independent and fearless in campaigning to expose and resist destructive projects.
  • Developing a vision that protects rivers and the communities that depend upon them. 

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Our Impact

0 Number of community groups, movements, and civil society organizations we have partnered with to provide campaign and advocacy support.
0 Destructive river projects delayed or stopped, resulting in millions of people retaining access to their traditional lands and livelihoods.
$ 0 B Funds (USD) channeled away from investment in destructive projects, toward sustainable and just alternatives.
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Latest News

Press Release | Marañón River as a Holder of Rights: Press Conference and Upcoming Appeal of Landmark Case

Press Release | Marañón River as a Holder of Rights: Press Conference and Upcoming Appeal of Landmark Case

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: MAY 7, 2024 Media Contacts: F. Javier Ruíz, Earth Law Center, (, +52 55 2403 3277) Juan Carlos Ruíz, Instituto Defensa Legal, (, +51 997 521 685) Iquitos, Perú — On May 9th, the Indigenous Kukama Women Federation (Huaynakana Kamatahuara Kana), through its lawyers Instituto Defensa Legal, will appear before the Superior…

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Statement | Dam collapse in Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil

Statement | Dam collapse in Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil

Português abaixo e aqui International Rivers expresses its concern and solidarity over the unfolding tragedy in southern Brazil, where a partial dam collapsed after torrential rainfall at the 14 de Julho hydroelectric plant and unleashed a wall of water on communities downstream. At least 30 people have reportedly died and dozens more are missing. More…

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