Pilot Initiative Aims to Improve Cooperation in Peru

Within the framework of the Water, Climate and Development Programme, GWP South America is guiding a pilot initiative to put in practice transectoral cooperation to generate resilience to climate change and water security in the Santa Eulalia sub-basin in Peru.

The initiative is part of a process towards the signing of a transectoral agreement among all Peruvian ministries which would commit them to implement several actions to ensure IWRM in the context of climate change.

The initiative aims to show that putting this agreement into practice is achievable and also to enlighten the way towards the efficient implementation of the country’s recent State Policy N°33 on Water Resources.

This is a pilot initiative for Peru but also a pilot programme for South America, as the intention is to replicate this experience in other countries of the region.

This undertaking already counts on the buy-in and ownership of a large range of public actors, national and local governments, civil society, top academic institutions, Lima’s largest supplier of water and sanitation services, and the largest mining and energy company in Peru, amongst others.

The most recent meeting of the cross-sectorial coordination group of the undertaking in Santa Eulalia sub-basin took place on November 12 and its main aim was to review and approve the programme document.

Participatory set-up

The first and second meeting took place on July 17-18 and August 7, respectively. In the first one, the coordination group was formed and the focus of the programme was agreed upon. The second meeting was held to expand on the definition of activities and align the proposed activities to the structure of Water and Climate Programmes.  All this information, generated in a very participatory manner, was used in the preparation of the programme document.

An IWRM Plan for the Santa Eulalia sub-basin and the design and implementation of eight demonstration projects showing good adaptation practices, such as forestation with native species and soil management and conservation, are among the expected results of the enterprise. It is estimated that the immediate beneficiaries will be around 17,000 people, of whom almost 7,000 live in poverty.

Inequality and poverty

Santa Eulalia sub basin produces 50% of the water and 70% of the energy used in Lima, which has 10 million inhabitants.  In contrast with its great potential for water and energy supply, the upper Santa Eulalia basin shows very high levels of poverty and inequality. Its population endures water, food and energy insecurity, all exacerbated by their increased vulnerability to the effects of climate change. Climate change has seriously affected its glaciers, which have retreated and almost completely disappeared.

Peru’s need to maximize the coordination of the use of its water resources is evident. Even though it has the highest per-capita availability of water in Latin America, it is also the most water-stressed country in the region because most of the population lives far from the available freshwater, separated by formidable obstacles.

Photo: Participants at the summer meetings