The Quimbo Hydroelectric Project is the first dam to be built in Colombia entirely by a multinational corporation, Emgesa an affiliate of Endesa-Enel, as part of the policies of creating investor confidence that have been imposed by recent administrations. This policy gives all the guarantees and support to the private corporations in detriment of the communities whose rights are violated.
The Quimbo Hydroelectric Project will inundate about 8,250 ha within its reservoir, some of the region´s most fertile land that will destroy the food security of hundreds of communities of fisher people, day workers, coffee growers, tobacco growers, cacao growers, artisanal miners and transporters among others that interact with the Magdalena River. This is why since the project started in 2008 the affected communities have protested and proposed alternatives for the development of their region while be consistently ignored by national authorities all while being trampled by the transnational company that in efforts of expanding its earnings has carefully unrecognized a significant portion of the affected peoples whose rights are being violated.
This is the reason that after four years of uncertainty the Association of the Affected of the Quimbo Hydroelectric Project (ASOQUIMBO) and other social sectors decided to move forward with the Regional Strike in Defense of the Territory of Huila, effectively paralyzing the dam´s construction for two weeks (January 3rd-18th, 2012) until agreements were signed with the national government which are on the brink of being broken.
This is why we are ASKING FOR YOUR HELP. PLEASE SIGN a solicitation to the Ministry of Environment and Sustainable Development to SUSPEND THE DIVERTING OF THE MAGDALENA RIVER scheduled for February 8th. If the river is diverted it will cause irreversible destruction to the country´s principal river basin and hydrological resource without taking into account the arguments and evidence of the affected communities, which are more than sufficient reason to detain the Quimbo Dam.
Don´t be left out, SIGN HERE NOW!
Water for Life, Not for Death
For more information please view:
Movimiento Colombiano Ríos Vivos
El Quimbo Dam on the Magdalena River would flood some of the most productive land of Huila State in Colombia. Hundreds of fishermen, coffee and tobacco laborers, small miners, and transport workers depend on the Magdalena for jobs and food. El Quimbo threatens their way of life.
Local communities have been proposing alternatives for the region and protesting the dam since 2008, including a 15-day strike in January that stopped construction. However, national authorities have ignored their requests and instead allowed EMGESA – a subsidiary of the multinational company Endesa-Enel, which is also involved in the controversial HidroAysén dam scheme in Chilean Patagonia – to proceed with the dam without respecting the rights of affected communities.
The Magdalena River is scheduled to be diverted – a first step in construction of El Quimbo Dam – on February 8.
Take action now in support of the affected people of Colombia by signing a letter to the Ministry of Environment, Housing and Sustainable Development, requesting a suspension of the river diversion. The government of Colombia and EMGESA should respect the will of the people.
Water for life, not for death.
Latin America Program Coordinator