On February 9th, 2015, the National Environmental Authority (ANAM) temporarily interrupted the construction of the hydroelectric dam project in Barro Blanco. The communities accepted the Government proposal to open a tripartite dialogue (Government, company and affected communities), then chose the committees to represent them. Five meetings have since taken place to discuss cultural and religious topics, as well as the current state of conservation of the petroglyphs (threatened by the flood generated by the dam) and others archaeological discoveries brought to light in the dam area.
The Movement 10 of April M10 makes public its rejection to the last activities taking place as the de facto entrance of machinery and excavators to the riverbed of our Tabasará River which we defend against these non consulted projects with the community, specifically the Hydroelectric Project Barro Blanco whose promoter is Generadores del Istmo S.A. GENISA.
The Alliance for Conservation and Development (ACD) ratifies its position expressed in the commentaries that we sent last year in relation to the validation of the Barro Blanco project on the part of AENOR, and as much laments that the promoter of the project as the Government of Panama would seem to be abusing the validation system of the CDM when retiring and to return to present a project that already had been put previously under a validation process. This practice seems irregular and would seem to us to indicate an excessive interest of the promoter to capitalize over what should be instead an international mechanism for the reduction of greenhouse gas emmissions. Also, we lamented the interest of the European Investment Bank (EIB) to finance a project that seemed not to satisfy the additionality requirement and that in addition, has been implied in the violation of human rights of the Ngöbe population and peasants of the Republic of Panama.
The communities next to the Tabasará river as much as those of Bellavista, Veladero and Cerro Viejo and in the district of Tolé (in the Province of Chiriquí), as those of Bakama in the district of Müna (in the indigenous region of Ngöbe Buglé) live intimately interrelated with Rio Tabasará from time immemorial of the colony.
November 7, 2008
We consider that the Barro Blanco Hydrolectric Project should not be validated as a Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) project; because this hydroelectric project completely fails to fulfill the condition of additionality required by the CDM; the Panamanian Designated National Authority (DNA), the National Environmental Authority (ANAM), is marred with conflicts of interests; and the Government of Panama has systematically violated the human rights of the Ngobe indigenous peoples and peasant communities that will be directly affected and that have opposed to the construction of this project since 1999.
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.
Following community protests by the indigenous Ngobe communities, Panama’s environment agency ANAM supended the Barro Blanco hydroelectric yesterday. The decision was taken because of breaches of the national environmental impact assessment requirements, including shortcomings in the agreement with the locally affected indigenous communities.