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Conflicts over an IADB funded project for an environmental center in Carlos Paz

Neighbors requested the closure of the current open dump and expressed their opposition to the development of the environmental center in Carlos Paz, which has funding from the Inter-American Development Bank.

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On Sunday, January 29, a local autoconvocatoria took place in the square of Villa San Nicolás (Malagueño), with the objective of informing and organizing itself with regard to the problem that generates in the whole area the presence of the open dump administered by the municipality of Villa Carlos Paz in the property located to the side of the motorway to Cordoba. The neighbors formed an inter-district commission that will work to elaborate the "action plan" that will define the following steps.

Through a statement, neighbors said they will request the closure of the current landfill at the time they anticipated that they disagree with the construction of the Villa Carlos Paz Environmental Center in the sector. This work is financed by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) through the Comprehensive Urban Solid Waste Management Program-AR-L1151.

The meeting came after a week in which the wind moved home smoke from the fire in the landfill that the city has on the side of the highway Justiniano Allende Posse, less than 1 km from the entrance to the neighborhood of Villa San Nicolás. "Only now is awareness. The smoke awoke us all and triggered the protest", said Lucas Bettiol, a neighbor of San Nicolás, in reference to the fire that was unleashed in the landfill and warned that,"we did not know until last week that they wanted to make an Environmental Center in the same place". They also stated: "Far from remedying the damage generated by the open dump, pollution levels will increase due to the installation of a new landfill that represents five times the size of the current landfill".

The neighbors expressed an explicit and emphatic rejection of both the current landfill and the establishment of the Villa Carlos Paz Environmental Center. In this sense ensure that if this proposal materializes "the environment will be even more damaged, the quality of air will decrease and groundwater and surface water will be contaminated, being that in the area all neighborhoods consume well water." Warned about the progress of the Environmental Center project, Bettiol said:
"... it will be a fight similar to what happened with Monsanto (Malvinas Argentinas), or the dumps of Bouwer and Santa Ana neighborhood ... We know that it is approved but we have the antecedent of Monsanto that was managed to stop and we hope To be able to stop this. The authorities are not dimensioning the environmental or social impact (...) The population of San Nicolás was not included in the Environmental Impact Study and we are less than 1 km. TierrAlta is closer. The authorities of Carlos Paz and Malagueño minimize what is happening in the landfill "

In April last year the environmental public hearing took place, in August the Ministry of Tourism carried out the national public bidding process and in November the bids for international public bidding were opened. The works are expected to begin in the middle of this year. 

 In view of the possible environmental and social impacts, compliance with provincial, national and IDB operational policies must be complied with.

In the statement, they affirm that they have not been considered in the environmental impact assessment process of the IDB-financed project and that, far from remedying the damage currently generated by the open pit, the levels of pollution will increase. They demand that the municipality of Malagueño be present and that Carlos Paz recognizes the violation of his rights. They also ask the province of Córdoba to act in the prevention of damage and demand the immediate repair of the damage done in the area.

The autoconvocados neighbors of San Nicolás, TierrAlta, Mariano Moreno, La Arbolada, Lote Joven, Valle del Golf, Causana and the districts Carlospacenses Costa Azul North and South requested a public study of the quality of the air, the soil and the underground beds.

From FUNDEPS we are following this process to ensure that human rights and the environment are respected. The location of the Villa Carlos Paz Environmental Center next to the La Calera Defense Nature Reserve, and meters away from San Roque Lake in areas that may have a higher propensity to seep or leach into the water, is questionable.

More information

- Neighbors of Malagueño expressed their rejection to the landfill

- Construction of the new environmental center begins in mid-year in Carlos Paz

- Advances and challenges in the Villa Carlos Paz Environmental Center Project

Contact

Gonzalo Roza / Coordinator of the Global Governance Area

gon.roza@fundeps.org