Letter from Centro de Incidencia Ambiental de Panamá (CIAM), Movimiento 10 de Abril (M-10), Asociación Ambientalista de Chiriquí (ASAMCHI), Asociación para la Conservación y el Desarrollo (ACD), Colectivo Voces Ecológicas, Center for International Environmental Law (CIEL), Earthjustice, Interamerican Association for Environmental Defense (AIDA), International Rivers, Carbon Market Watch, Both ENDS, Collective Voices for Peace, Salva la Selva and Marin Interfaith Task Force to: Mr. John Knox, UN Independent Expert on Human Rights and the Environment.
It is to draw attention to the Barro Blanco hydroelectric dam on the Tabasará River in the Province of Chiriquí, Panama.
The letter writes to Mr. John Knox:
This project has raised possible violations of human rights obligations relating to the enjoyment of a safe, clean, healthy and sustainable environment. In furtherance of your mandate to study those obligations, we encourage you to examine
the situation and to explore how it exemplifies the connection between human rights and environmental harm. In particular, we encourage you to look at issues related to the lack of consultation with affected people, the role of the CDM in fostering human rights violations, and the threats to environmental defenders. To gain a more in-depth understanding of the situation, we encourage you to meet with affected community members during your upcoming consultation in Panama in July. We also invite you to take any other appropriate action within your mandate that could slow or stop the dam’s constructions and/or highlight the threat to the Ngäbe’s rights.