News & Press

Press release
2 Jun 2015

MEDIA STATEMENT: Independent report finds Dutch and German development banks failed to comply with environmental and human rights standards in financing the Barro Blanco dam in Panama

Kiad, Panama/Amsterdam/Bogota – Last Friday, a long-awaited report by an independent panel found that FMO and DEG, the Dutch and German development banks, violated their own policies by failing to adequately assess the risks to indigenous rights and the environment before approving a US$50 million loan to GENISA, the developer of the Barro Blanco hydroelectric project in Panama. FMO and DEG’s response to the findings, while acknowledging some deficiencies in their assessment, does not commit to any measures to address the outstanding policy violations. Even while the report concludes that “the lenders have not taken the resistance of the affected communities seriously enough,” it appears that FMO and DEG continue to do so.

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News
7 May 2015

NEWS: The Global Fund & human rights – Lessons from the health sector

As the financial and market mechanisms established under the UNFCCC struggle to implement policies aimed at the protection and promotion of human rights, these institutions might benefit from learning how other global financial mechanisms are dealing with this issue, such as the Global Fund’s new Human Rights Complaints Procedure.

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News
7 May 2015

NEWS: Future of Barro Blanco hydro dam left to European investment banks

Following the temporary suspension of the controversial CDM hydroelectric project Barro Blanco in February, Panama’s government acknowledges “recurring administrative flaws and improper handling” by the company in charge. After its dismissal, a new roundtable is now convened to analyse how the project can continue under a new management and “in accordance with the well-being of the communities”. The crucial decision to continue financing the project is now up to the German and Dutch development banks.

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News
2 Apr 2015

European Parliament discusses human rights dimension of EU’s climate finance contributions

Last week in an event in the European Parliament, various stakeholders discussed experiences with existing climate mechanisms against the future climate finance policy landscape, where potentially huge amounts of climate finance will not only be channeled through the Green Climate Fund (GCF) but also through bilateral agreements and other instruments where it is still unclear what types of safeguards and compliance mechanisms will be applicable and how the respective public and private stakeholders involved will be accountable.

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News
5 Mar 2015

EU’s plan to link to Swiss carbon market adds pressure to announce an increased climate target

Tomorrow, the EU is expected to announce its climate contributions towards the Paris climate agreement. The expected decision will build on the European Commission’s Road to Paris vision published last week. Hopes are that Ministers take their chances to address a number of critical issues that risk severely undermining the 40% domestic reduction target. They include a clear commitment to increase the 40% target in case of linking the EU’s emissions trading system (EU ETS) with other carbon markets, the way land use emissions are accounted for and the threat the existing surplus of emission allowances pose on the 2030 climate target.

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News
25 Feb 2015

European Commission publishes vision on the Paris Protocol to tackle climate change

Today, the European Commission (EC) has published a first glimpse of the mitigation contributions the EU intends to contribute to the Paris Protocol. The Communication launched today entitled “The Paris Protocol – A blueprint for tackling global climate change beyond 2020” includes a proposal for the EU’s proposed Intended Nationally Determined Contribution (INDCs) prepared in…

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Press release
25 Feb 2015

Media Advisory: Announcement of EU climate pledge for UN climate deal may undermine 40% domestic climate target by 5%

The EU is expected to sign-off on its official international climate pledge – the so called Intended Nationally Determined Contribution (INDC), with an announcement on 6 March at the next meeting of the EU’s Environment Ministers. This announcement will make the EU the first region to flesh out its pledge following the Lima UNFCCC meeting….

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Press release
10 Feb 2015

Proyecto Barro Blanco, registrado bajo el Mecanismo de Desarrollo Limpio de la ONU, es suspendido por incumplimiento con su Evaluación de Impacto Ambiental

Ciudad de Panamá, Panamá y Ginebra, Suiza. En una decisión histórica, la Autoridad Nacional del Ambiente (ANAM) de Panamá ordenó ayer la suspensión temporal de la construcción del proyecto hidroeléctrico Barro Blanco debido al incumplimiento con su Evaluación de Impacto Ambiental. La represa fue registrada bajo el Mecanismo de Desarrollo Limpio (MDL) de la ONU pese a que amenaza con inundar el territorio de las comunidades Ngäbe Buglé.

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Press release
10 Feb 2015

UN registered Barro Blanco Hydroelectric Dam temporarily suspended over non-compliance with Environmental Impact Assessment

PANAMA CITY, Panama and GENEVA, Switzerland In a landmark decision, Panama’s National Environmental Authority (ANAM) temporarily suspended the construction of the Barro Blanco hydroelectric dam yesterday over non-compliance with its Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA). The dam was approved by the UN Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) despite risks of flooding to the territory of the indigenous Ngäbe Bugle communities.

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