Rocking the region-Andean Water Tour- March 2011
To further Project AN2’s work-forging the way for the establishment of crucially-needed water management agreements- several CIAT team-members have spent the latter part of March 2011 on an intensive regional tour. Alongside their regional and global counterparts from the CPWF-(of which the project forms part), they sustained an action-packed schedule, of which even a well-seasoned rock-star would have been proud.
Passing through Peru, Ecuador and Colombia, the cohort visited key project sites-meeting with stakeholders along the way. The extensive series of consultations brought to life the realities and challenges of setting up Benefit-Sharing Mechanism (BSM) schemes.
The ultimate goal of introducing BSM schemes in the Andes is to improve water resource usage with equitable benefits for all users. To achieve this- the AN2 Team, in collaboration with their counterpart projects, is seeking to identify a sustainable means for downstream beneficiaries to provide incentives to upstream communities for the modification of their water-management practices, as well as to provide compensation or support for existent and appropriate practices.
The vision is that realizing these aims would prove a win-win scenario of improved downstream water supply and simultaneous elevation of the frequently impoverished upstream communities’ economic security. While simple in concept, establishing these schemes in reality is a complex process and requires extensive understanding of the site contexts, in relation to ecosystems, micro and macro -economics, politics, cultural and historic factors.
To address the complexity of these issues, project AN2 (as all CPWF projects) comprises a star-studded multidisciplinary cast. The team’s work contributes to both regional and global efforts for improving watershed management.
The CPWF, in its second phase, is working to improve the management of major river basins across the globe via the Basin Development Challenges (BDCs). The BDCs are focussed on six water-basins: Andean system of basins; Ganges delta; Limpopo; Mekong; Nile; and Volta.
For further updates of the team’s ground-breaking work and details of future tours-stay tuned!