Category Archives: PUBLICACIONES

(Español) EL DILEMA ETICO ENTRE EL ACUERDO DE PARIS SOBRE EL CAMBIO CLIMATICO Y EL CARBON DE PUNTA CATALINA

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(Español) CARACTERIZACION Y AGENDA AMBIENTAL DE BARAHONA

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(Español) MANIFIESTO POR EL AGUA Y LA VIDA

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Victory for Environmental Defenders and Democracy in Latin America

After a 6-year negotiation process, 24 Latin American and Caribbean countries have adopted a regional agreement to ensure access to information, participation, and justice in environmental matters. Upon entering into force, the agreement will include the first ever legally binding provisions to protect environmental defenders from threats and attacks.

The agreement, also known as LAC P10 or the Escazú Convention, requires states to guarantee the right to a healthy environment, the right of access to environmental information, the right to public participation, the right of access to justice in environmental matters, and a safe environment for environmental human rights defenders.

ELAW provided support to several partners in the region as they participated in the negotiations.

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ELAW partner Carole Excell, Project Director of The Access Initiative, said the agreement “will make it easier for millions of people to access environmental information, participate in decision-making that affect their lives, and hold powerful interests to account for environmental injustices. It took vision and courage for Governments from the region to engage in developing this agreement with the significant and open participation of civil society throughout the whole process.”

ELAW partner Euren Cuevas Medina, Executive Director of Instituto de Abogados para la Protección del Media Ambiente (INSAPROMA) in the Dominican Republic, has worked on the agreement for many years. “This agreement will play a huge role in ensuring that environmental defenders in the Dominican Republic are protected from attacks,” said Euren.

ELAW partner Gabriela Burdiles Perucci, Attorney at Fiscalía del Media Ambiente (FIMA) in Chile, said, “It is a unique treaty because it addresses for the first time the issue of strengthening environmental democracy in Latin America and the Caribbean. In addition, it protects vulnerable groups such as indigenous peoples and other people who can not access or have difficult access to state institutions and courts to enforce their rights.”

ELAW partner Andrea Cerami, Attorney at the Centro Mexicano de Derecho Ambiental (CEMDA), said, “After being involved in the negotiation process for many years, I am pleased that 24 countries have adopted the LAC P10 agreement. It will provide the opportunity for States to guarantee that citizens and people in their jurisdictions can participate in environmental decision-making, and keep environmental and human rights defenders safer from attacks.”

Countries will be able to officially sign the agreement starting in September 2018. Once the agreement enters into force, ELAW will work with advocates to ensure State Parties are effectively implementing the agreement.

Around the world, environmental and human rights defenders are facing increasing attacks and threats for their work. In 2017, Global Witness reports that 197 environmental defenders were killed for their work, with 60% of them in Latin America.

Last week, ELAW partners at CEMDA released a new report, “Informe sobre la situatión de las personas defensoras de los derechos humanos ambientales” (Report on the situation of environmental human rights defenders). The report details attacks and harassment against Mexican environmental defenders.

For more information about the LAC P10 agreement, see:

Latin American countries sign legally binding pact to protect land defenders

4 Environmental Activists are Murdered Every Week. A New Agreement Could Help in Latin America and the Caribbean.

See original source in following link: http://elaw.org/victory-environmental-defenders-and-democracy-latin-america.

Decisions of the meeting between the ADP and environmental organizations to present the Dominican School Responds to Climate Change Program, Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Santo Domingo,

Thursday Sept 28

Last Tuesday, September 26th, representatives of the environmental movement of the country met with the Dominican Association of Teachers (ADP), at its national headquarters in the city of Santo Domingo, D. N., in order to meet and exchange about the Dominican School Responds to Climate Change Program. This proposal was prepared by the ADP, under the guidance of 2009 Nobel Peace Prize laureate Rajendra K. Pachauri, and with input from environmental organizations. The Autonomous University of Santo Domingo (UASD), also participated in this meeting, which is in the process of formalizing its participation in the Program through a framework agreement signed with the ADP.

From the exchange on the Program, the following conclusions and commitments were reached:

  1. Make all general, sectoral and bilateral preparations and agreements during the remaining months of 2017, in order to start with the Program beginning January 1st of next year, 2018. The Program will be launched before the end of 2017, if possible with the participation of Dr. Pachauri.
  1. The UASD makes its resources, its virtual, institutional and physical platform, available to the Program. Also resources for hosting and publishing materials. At the end of the first year of the Program, a publication should be published containing the contents and progress of the Program, especially its diploma.
  1. The environmental movement undertook to provide specialized teachers for the diploma to participate in it, and select the place where it will interact with the program in order to accompany the schools and contribute to the development of small initiatives and projects on climate change or intervention in the climatic vulnerability of the area where the schools are located. In this sense, in the next two weeks, the organizations will have to send the personal data and CVs of potential teachers who will give classes in the diploma, indicating the specific topic of the program. The UASD will provide the profile of these teachers after it is reviewed by Dr. Pachauri
  1. Ask Dr. Pachauri to manage highly recognized international teachers in the field of climate change to participate in the diploma, both remotely and virtually as well as in face-to-face visits to DR.
  1. Environmental organizations are in the best position to sign any agreements that may be necessary to launch and set up the Program.

The meeting also discussed three other topics: a) The program of activities of Dr. Pachauri’s stay in DR; b) Post-ratification actions of the Paris Agreement on Climate Change; and c) The verdict of the TC supporting the non-admission of the Superior Administrative Tribunal of preventive environmental protection against the construction of the Punta Catalina coal plants. On these aspects, it was decided:

(a) Program of Dr. Rajendra K. Pacharuri’s stay:

– The celebration of four master lectures in Santiago de los Caballeros, Barahona, Baní and San Pedro de Macorís.

– Do everything possible to ensure that Dr. Pachauri is invested with a doctorate Honoris Causa that will most likely be approved by the Cláustro Menor of the UASD on October 28, during his next stay in DR. Master lecture given after his investiture, in the UASD with the support of the ADP and the Dominican environmental movement.

– Celebration of a major launch event for the Dominican School Responds to Climate Change program, chaired by Dr. Pachauri.

The date and other details of these activities will be decided at a later date when we have the date of Dr. Rajendra and Dr. Aachauri’s arrival in the country, possibly between late November and early December of this year.

  1. b) On post-Ratification activities of the Paris Accord on Climate Change:

Subscription of joint declaration requesting President Danilo Medina, the National Congress and the Dominican Corporation of State Electric Companies (CDEEE) to convert the Punta Catalina coal plants to natural gas. Organizations will seek the endorsement of this statement from other organizations with which they have a close relationship.

Press conference to make the joint statement public.

At a special meeting, discuss a program of actions to strengthen compliance with the country’s commitment to reduce the country’s total emissions by 25% by 2030. The date and place of this meeting will be announced.

  1. c) About the TC ruling:

A panel on this sentence in light of the principle of prevention or precaution, preferably to be held at the Academy of Science of the Dominican Republic, with the participation of renowned lawyers and environmentalists.

To contact international entities so that they can react to this ruling and consider the possibility of acceding to international instances and jurisdictions so that they may judge or give their opinion on the jurisprudence of this ruling, which denies access to the constitutional process of protection to the defense of environmental law and restricts it to administrative and other ordinary contentious proceedings. Explore the possibility of opening proceedings before the Inter-American Court of Rights on this sentence.

We would like to take this opportunity to inform you that on Thursday, Thursday, 28th, the ADP met with INAFOCAM to present the Program. INAFOCAM agrees to participate in the Program, especially under the auspices of the Diploma. For tomorrow, the President of the ADP, Eduardo Hidalgo, will hold a meeting with the Vice-Minister of Education, Fran Cáceres and other officials from the portfolio, to present the Program. Also on Thursday, October 5, a delegation from the ADP, chaired by Professor Hidalgo, will also meet with the director of the National Climate Change Council and the Clean Development Mechanism, Ernesto Reyna Alcántara, for the same purpose.

Tomorrow, Friday, September 28, ADP President Eduardo Hidalgo will hold a meeting with Vice Minister of Education Fran Cáceres and other portfolio officials to present the Program.

Also on Thursday, October 5, a delegation of the ADP, chaired by Professor Hidalgo, will also meet with the director of the National Climate Change Council and the Clean Development Mechanism, Ernesto Reyna Alcántara, with the same purpose

Enrique de León

ADP-26-09-17-02 ADP-26-09-17-03 ADP-26-09-17-04 ADP-26-09-17-01

(Español) Según los expertos, estos son los países que lograrían sobrevivir al cambio climático

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(Español) ASEGURAN QUE TC IGNORO PRINCIPIO DE PREVENCION DEL DERECHO AMBIENTAL EN SENTENCIA QUE EMITIO RECHAZANDO AMPARO EN CONTRA DE PUNTA CATALINA

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(Español) ORGANIZACIONES AMBIENTALISTAS CELEBRAN QUE POR FIN PAIS RATIFIQUE ACUERDO DE PARIS SOBRE CAMBIO CLIMATICO

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ENVIRONMENTAL DISASTER IN VALLE ENCANTADO, QUITA SUEÑO

Today marks the 15th day of the oil spill from the viaduct that carries this fuel to the FALCONBRIDGE mine at its facilities in Bonao from the deposit they have in Quita Sueño Haina, San Cristobal. The spill has been detected in Quita Sueño de Haina’s neighborhood Valle Encantado, two tanker trucks are sucking oil from the sewers, pulling several trucks out since Sunday, August 20, without having found the leakage that has caused the environmental disaster to date. as the backhoe loaders keep trying to find the leak.

 

The impact on water, soil, subsoil, air, biodiversity and people is not yet estimated, but it is certainly considerable. Neighbors have told the national press that they have suffered in their health, feel dizzy, with headaches, vomiting, eye irritation, among other symptoms.

 

The damage caused by the spill to the nearest neighbors has been evident from not being able to light a stove in their homes, to having to move away from their home, since the fuel is flammable and if they light a stove to cook their food could blow up the whole neighborhood and there is something worse that you can’t cook in your home, or you can’t live in your home with your family, without having anywhere to go and the danger for those who stay, exposed to any greater disaster that that already has occurred.

 

This type of environmental disaster only occurs when there has been negligence on the part of the company in the maintenance of the oil pipeline, leaving it to its own fate and although they are repeat offenders, the authorities do not do the monitoring work that the law requires and inevitably this type of environmental disaster occurs.

 

DESASTRE AMBIENTAL EN VALLE ENCANTADO QUITA SUEÑO-02FALCONDO again commits environmental crime in the impoverished town of Quita Sueño, and as provided in article 76 of Law 64-00, which states that ” The consequences of environmental disasters caused by negligence shall be the exclusive responsibility of the persons or entities responsible for them, who shall replace or restore the areas or resources destroyed or affected, if possible, and shall be held criminally and civilly liable for the damages caused”.

 

Article 174 of Law 64-00 also classifies this type of act as an environmental crime as it reads “Everyone who, by act or omission, guilt or intentionally, transgresses or violates the present law and other provisions that complement it, commits a crime against the environment and natural resources and, therefore, will respond accordingly. Thus, any aggression or crime against the environment and natural resources gives rise to an action against the guilty or responsible party.”

 

Euren Medina Cuevas
Director of INSAPROMA
Expert in Environmental Law

IMMEDIATE EXPULSION OF OBDEBRECHT OF THE COUNTRY AND NEW TENDER OF PUNTA CATALINA BASED ON NATURAL GAS

Response to Odebrecht consortium’s demand for an additional 700 million dollars to complete the Punta Catalina coal plants that are two years behind.
Public Statement,
Monday, August 28,2017,
Santo Domingo, D. N.
The only option the government has before Odebrecht after it confessed last December that it bribed public officials in the Dominican Republic with $92 million dollars between 2001 and 2014 is the application of Law 340-06 on Public Contracting.
Articles 11,14,36,65 and 66 of this law provide for the termination of contracts of companies that commit acts of corruption or are related thereto, and the lifelong disqualification of their status as contractors or bidders of the Dominican State,”without liability to the contracting entity” (Article 66.4).
If Odebrecht has had the audacity to demand an additional 700 million dollars from the government of Danilo Medina to complete the construction of the Punta Catalina coal plants now with a two-year delay, it is because the country is being held hostage by this transnational company and victim of its own corruption, a participant and accomplice in the corruption of this company that turned the country into an international money laundering center and a brothel for national and foreign officials.
It is impossible to believe in the government’s refusal to comply with Odebrecht’s demand and not to think that this refusal will be nothing more than feeble bargaining for the consumption of advertising of an unavoidable payment that will come from the citizen’s ribs.
The government, instead of applying the Public Contracts Law, concluded an approved agreement between the Attorney General’s Office and Odebrecht, with the purpose of protecting it from criminal prosecution of its crime of corruption, maintained the contracts of this company, especially Punta Catalina, and has continued to give it millions of dollars for this work, as if nothing had happened.
Danilo Medina preferred to lose around 300 million dollars pending disbursement of the European bank pool loan and to issue 500 million sovereign bonds, before abandoning his relations with Odebrecht, whose corrupt practice in the Punta Catalina project is the cause of the decision of these banks.
The complicity story with Odebrecht in Punta Catalina began with a fixed bidding process to favor it and sending a contract that violated the terms of reference of this bidding process to to the National Congress, diluting the turnkey nature of this contract, incorporating a cost escalation clause, No. 9.1. and assigning an exemption of all types of taxes through clause 12.1.3.
This pairing between the government and Odebrecht continued when this company was unable to meet its contractual commitments because of its corrupt behavior.
Danilo Medina and his government, instead of denouncing and annulling the contract for breach, covered the lack of financing from the National Bank for Economic and Social Development of Brazil (BNDES), with domestic resources.
They did not care about violating the Constitution of the Republic and the national budget law to allocate a large part of the savings from the Oil Tax for the construction of Punta Catalina and seriously endanger the stability of the Bano de Reservas with loans that did not comply with any legal requirement, in order to settle commitments with local contractors and suppliers of this work.
If Dominican workers’ pension funds were spared from this predatory attack to raise funds to be invested in Punta Catalina, it was due to opposition from European banks, especially the shareholders’ meeting of the French bank Société Genérale, who threatened to withdraw their financing in the event that the government spent $600 million of these funds on this project. In Europe, it is forbidden for pension funds to be used in the construction of coal plants and other investments related to this fossil fuels.
Odebrecht’s demand for more money, in addition to dramatically exposing the government’s vulnerability to this company to the public, has confirmed the denunciations that the final cost of this project would far exceed the contract price and has denied that Punta Catalina’s construction is at a level of 70% of its schedule.
These two additional disclosures, the additional cost overrun on the contract price and the delay in the work schedule, leave no arguments to those who oppose an independent audit of this project and a new tender on the basis of natural gas.
The overvaluation of Punta Catalina is not limited to these new additional 700 million dollars claimed by Odebrecht. An audit is necessary to accurately quantify the overvaluation existing to date for the construction of Punta Catalina, in order to demand its reimbursement and to prosecute the culprits and beneficiaries of this overvaluation.
If the government implements the Public Contracts Law, it would not have to comply with Odebrecht’s demand for an additional 700 million dollars in payment and could open a new bidding process based on natural gas to conclude Punta Catalina before 2020 and at a lower cost than the total cost stipulated by Odebrecht for these coal plants.
The great benefit of converting Punta Catalina’s natural gas is to avoid the very serious contamination from coal and a considerable amount of carbon dioxide emissions into the atmosphere.
The National Committee to Combat Climate Change, CNLCC, reiterates once again the application of Law 340-06 on Public Contracting to Odebrecht, for which reason this company must be immediately expelled from the country.
Likewise, an independent audit of the overvaluation of Punta Catalina and the call for a new bidding process based on natural gas to complete the construction of this project.
It is a demand that we made with the knowledge that the authorities’ complicity with Odebrecht’s corruption prevents it from being satisfied, not because it is impossible, but because of the permanence in power of a government as guilty as this company, of the corruption committed in Punta Catalina.
NATIONAL COMMITTEE TO COMBAT CLIMATE CHANGE, CNLCC
EXPULSION INMEDIATA DE OBDEBRECHT DEL PAIS Y NUEVA LICITACION DE PUNTA CATALINA EN BASE A GAS NATURAL