Transmission lines and indigenous territory

Company News, CSR and Social, Energy    Mar 18, 2021 3:28 PM

The expansion of the ‘Black Line’ has become a headache for the government.

The project was initially in the hands of the Agustín Codazzi Geographic Institute (IGAC) because it was considered a technical issue, but now the Ministry of the Interior (MinInterior) oversees it because it is social.

Representatives of IGAC told Portafolio that Decree 1500 of 2018 stablishes a new polygon to delimit the traditional and ancestral territory of four indigenous communities of the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta (SNSM), but it is not within their scope of authority.

MinInterior must define the issue of the ancestry of these communities and their respective “sacred spaces”, to advance in the new layout of the ‘Black Line.’

The entity is analyzing the issue, studying all the information related to the ancestral space of the four SNSM communities to establish how far the ancestral space goes.

This situation affects several projects in the energy sector as this would imply changing transmission routes and, in some cases, isolates generators.

“The expansion lines are the most affected, mainly those that would draw energy from wind and solar generation projects to the center and the Caribbean regions,” ANDEG’s Alejandro Castañeda said.

Castañeda said that while it is not clearly defined how the polygon will be formed, key projects of unconventional renewable sources will also enter the freezer.

“There will be no lines to draw all the current energy demanded by users in the country. It will also end up affecting the development of prior consultations,” Castañeda explained.

Bottom-Line: The government recently said that there is a ‘harmonious relationship with the communities’, but this news proves otherwise.

Renewable energies are affected by the lack of planning and poor relationships with the communities.

Solving this will be a long and difficult process.

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