Sea Turtles, Environmental Projects and Jeep

Find out how Jeep's sustainability trail leads to various nature conservation actions

April 16, 2018 - When a sea turtle goes from the sea to the beach for spawning, it doesn't know what it will find on the way. Their babies also break new paths full of challenges while still small and helpless. Throughout the journey often times these creatures will encounter their greatest threat: humankind's actions. Fishing nets, for example, can cause accidents. That's what happened to a tortoise named Aventura. But what could have been the end for her turned into a restart, thanks to the TAMAR project.

Aventura is a loggerhead turtle found by TAMAR biologists on the coast of Bahia last year. She had been injured with from fishing nets around the island of Itaparica and was greatly weakened. It took four months of treatment until she was healthy enough to be returned to the sea. She is also being monitored by satellite.

The release of Aventura in January of this year symbolized the birth of the partnership between Jeep and the marine life preservation project. Nine Jeep Wrangler, Renegade and Compass, all with 4×4 traction, were distributed among the various TAMAR branches. The objective is to bring more safety and comfort to the difficult-to-reach areas during the monitoring of spawning and birth of the turtles on the coast.

Since returning to the sea, Adventure has already covered 1,080 km. The researchers explain that the movement of the tortoise is not linear, that is, the total displacement also counts its comings and goings, and the distances in circles. During the most recent check, held at the beginning of March, the turtle was already in the Guarapuá region, near the famous beach of Morro de São Paulo in Bahia, about 150 km away from the place she was released.

The tortoise named Aventura with a group of people

The connection between Jeep and TAMAR, however, did not begin with the story of Aventura the turtle. It's a story that began when this internationally recognized pioneering project originated. It was while trail blazing the Brazilian coast on a Jeep Willys that the founders, Guy Marcovaldi and Maria Ángela Marcovaldi, rescued turtles. "We had the pleasure of using the wonderful Jeep cars from 1982 to 1985 and, in 2018, we will restart this great adventure together again to protect these animals," says Guy Marcovaldi, oceanographer and national coordinator of TAMAR.

For Jeep, support for TAMAR will strengthen the actions the brand already carries out for the conservation of the Atlantic Forest, a fundamental biome for the maintenance of marine ecosystems. "To celebrate this partnership with the TAMAR project, represents the consolidation of our values which are authenticity, freedom, passion and adventure. We are totally in tune with the objectives, practices and results of the project", says João Ciaco, director of Communication, Marketing and Sustainability at FCA, a holding company that controls Jeep.

Connection with nature

The harmony between Jeep and nature also translates into other actions, such as the Biodiversity Program in Pernambuco. The initiative, pioneer in the Northeast, realizes the conservation of the Atlantic Forest. Since 2014, where more than 70 thousand seedlings of 289 different species and 27 in extinction, have been planted, in the factory's own nursery, located in the Jeep Automotive Pole, in Goiana. The goal is to reach by 2024 the planting of 208 thousand seedlings, with the creation of 304 hectares of green area and ecological corridors.

 The greenhouse belonging to the Biodiversity Program in Pernambuco

In the Jeep Automotive Pole, where the Renegade and the Compass are manufactured, actions are also taken to prevent and reduce environmental impacts where the fight against waste goes hand in hand with modern production lines. The FCA's world most modern plant uses 100% of renewable energy and has already managed to reduce by 30% the energy consumption for each vehicle produced. With these and other actions, in 2016, the Jeep Pole became the first of the FCA group in Latin America to neutralize carbon emissions, in scopes 1 and 2 (direct and indirect emissions, respectively).

The water used for manufacturing cars is also treated and its recycling reaches more than 99%. The consumption per vehicle was reduced by 45%. In the case of solid waste, all metal, plastic and other materials, generated throughout the manufacturing of automobiles, are sent for reuse and recycling.

TAMAR Project: the adventure continues

Since 2001, the TAMAR project studies the displacement of sea turtles using satellite monitoring, which allows us to understant migratory routes and better define protection strategies. As it was in the case of Aventura, the work of the researchers also includes the transportation of the professionals to rescue the animals and follow the spawning on the beaches of the Brazilian coast. "Cars are part of our everyday life, because every day we face a different challenge in handling animals and interacting with communities."The Brazilian coastline is extensive and challenging, and Jeep is with us in this adventure ", highlights Gonzalo Rostan, biologist and project coordinator.

Learn more about the partnership between Jeep and TAMAR in the video:

Words: Mariama Correia

Pictures: Marketing

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