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IDB Invest meets with civil society organizations to discuss Colombia’s Hidroituango project

Institution reiterates commitment to affected communities, support for efforts undertaken by EPM and Colombian authorities

On Tuesday, June 5, representatives from IDB Invest, the IDB Group’s private sector arm, met with delegations from Movimiento Rios Vivos, the Interamerican Association for Environmental Defense, and the Center for International Environmental Law to discuss the situation of the Hidroituango hydroelectric project in Antioquia, Colombia.

IDB Invest, along with other investors, approved financing for the project, which is designed to supply up to 17 percent of Colombia’s future electricity demand.

At the meeting held at IDB Invest’s headquarters in Washington, DC, participants discussed the project’s impact on indigenous communities and the steps being taken by project managers Empresas Publicas de Medellin (EPM) as well as by national, departmental and municipal authorities to meet the needs of people living in the project’s area.    

IDB Invest representatives explained that EPM has so far implemented the contingency measures and plans required by the multilateral agency’s safeguards policies. Among other activities, this includes communicating with affected communities and coordinating with local, regional and national emergency organizations as well as taking steps to rescue fish and other wildlife. They also underscored that measures such as installing early warning alarms in the community of Puerto Valdivia and evacuating residents from high-risk areas have so far provided effective protection for those living in the project’s area of influence.

The IDB Invest representatives reaffirmed the agency’s commitment to human rights, transparency, good corporate governance, and the social and environmental sustainability of its projects. An IDB Invest delegation will be visiting Medellin this week to explore ways to support affected communities and the efforts of EPM and local authorities. The IDB Group’s goal is to support EPM to ensure that the project will generate clean and affordable electricity while safeguarding communities in its area of influence.

IDB Invest also reiterated its commitment to engaging in an open dialogue with all groups interested in the project and to provide information on all issues concerning the IDB Group.

About the IDB 

The Inter-American Development Bank is devoted to improving lives. Established in 1959, the IDB is a leading source of long-term financing for economic, social and institutional development in Latin America and the Caribbean. The IDB also conducts cutting-edge research and provides policy advice, technical assistance and training to public and private sector clients throughout the region.