PBI-Honduras observes assembly of Quimistán communities concerned by the risk of displacement by the El Tablón dam
On August 16, PBI-Honduras tweeted:
“[We] recently observed an assembly in which residents of Quimistán communities spoke about the risks of the “El Tablón” project. The communities expressed their rejection of any action that means their displacement and the destruction of the environment.”
On Facebook, PBI-Honduras also posted:
“As they share, they have not been consulted about the realization of the project; besides, remember that since the beginning of the year the municipality of Quimistán was declared free of hydropower and mining.
From PBI we express concern about the social and ecological risks reported by the people living in the region. We remind that communities have the right to access all information and to be consulted about any action that impacts their territory and their ways of life.”
In June, El Heraldo reported:
“The government of Xiomara Castro will allocate more than 200 million dollars for the construction of the “El Tablón” dam in the Sula Valley, in northern Honduras.
The dam will be built in the municipality of Quimistán, in the department of Santa Bárbara, at the height of the Chamelecón River at a cost of 200 million dollars, financed with national funds and another part of the multilateral bank.
“El Tablón” will be used as a multipurpose dam, with the main objective of regulating the flows in the Chamelecón River and controlling the floods caused in the Sula Valley, in addition to generating hydroelectric power and supplying drinking water to the region.
The Minister of Energy estimated that “according to the schedule of activities we have, it is likely that civil works will begin in the second half of 2023 or at the beginning of 2024…”
La Prensa has also reported:
“Every time a new government dusts off the plans to build El Tablón, in the community of La Ceibita, Quimistán, Santa Bárbara, they raise their hands to their heads as a sign of concern and uncertainty.
The LA PRENSA Premium Research Unit team visited the area where the dam will be built and the site, a small canyon where the dam curtain will go, is barely located 10 minutes by road from the community.”
And the Government of Honduras-affiliated Canal 8 has reported:
“The construction of the “El Tablón” hydroelectric plant has been a postponed project since 1974. …It was not until 2007, during the term of former president José Manuel Zelaya Rosales, that … a [$1 million] consulting contract signed with … the Canadian consulting firm SNC-Lavalin International Inc., to review and update the feasibility study, detailed bid design, and bidding documents for the dam construction concession.”
We will continue to follow this.