Colombia. Ecopetrol implements regional strategic environmental investment plan for water, air, soil and biodiversity

Colombia. Ecopetrol realiza inversión ambiental regional estratégica para agua, aire, suelo y biodiversidad

Ecopetrol is implementing a very ambitious strategic environmental investment plan, which aims to co-fund 20 projects in different regions of the country, with total investment amounting to $31,000 million.

These projects will enable the prevention of 500,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions through forest carbon initiatives. They will also prevent the degradation of 9,516 hectares of forest and result in the recovery of 2,000 hectares of land and 120 hectares of wetlands.

The plan also covers soil management in 1,000 hectares of foothills and 10,000 hectares of floodable savannahs. 718 water quality monitoring points will be set up and conservation initiatives will be undertaken to protect 11 vulnerable species of fauna and flora located in the operating areas of Ecopetrol.

The contracts for these projects were signed in 2014 and the projects, which commenced in 2014 and 2015, have their origin in initiatives led by government and non-governmental organisations in different regions, with a view to obtaining positive impacts at both local and national levels.

Participating organisations include: the Fundación Natura, seven Regional Autonomous Corporations, the Ideam (Institute of Hydrology, Meteorology and Environmental Studies), Parques Nacionales Naturales, National and UNISANGIL universities, Asprodi, the Wildlife Conservation Society and ten regional environmental organisations.

Water resource management and protection of water projects include initiatives to recover the wetlands of the lower basin of the Cimitarra River and the Claro Cocorná Sur River in Antioquia. For this purpose, an interactive map of water conflicts will be created, in cooperation with the National University.