PBI-Colombia accompanies CREDHOS as it tests water in Sabana de Torres impacted by wastewater discharges

Published by Brent Patterson on

On February 7, the Regional Corporation for the Defence of Human Rights (CREDHOS) posted:

“We continued with our environmental agenda in the territory, this time from the municipality of Sabana de Torres, Santander, making a technical visit of ocular inspection and in situ measurement of physicochemical parameters of the San Isidro and La Gómez streams, the latter impacted by wastewater discharges.

During our tour, we visited the Cabildo Verde Natural Reserve, where an important stretch of the San Isidro stream is preserved.

We thank the Human Rights Committee that accompanied us during this tour and especially Cabildo Verde for allowing us to enter their natural reserve, habitat of rescued species in the Magdalena Medio region.”

That same day, El Frente reported: “James Murillo, director of the Cabildo Verde de Sabana de Torres, denounced that this environmental tragedy has been going on for about half a century. He stressed that the source of pollution is upstream, and includes the release of untreated wastewater from the Bucaramanga metropolitan area.”

Murillo also told Vanguardia: “This [pollution] is because of the discharges that are made from the upper part of the Lebrija River, mainly due to urban discharges, especially from the metropolitan area, that is, from Girón, Piedcuesta, Bucaramanga, Lebrija, all the large cities of the department make their wastewater discharges, all this water ends up in the riverbed and given the levels due to the dry season.”

El Frente further notes: “Fisherman Orlando Estupiñán, a resident of La Esperanza, recounted how his livelihood has been disrupted since February 2. The presence of dead fish, the foul smell and the murky color of the river have made it impossible to continue their work.”

And Manuel Quintero, a fisherman from the Puerto López sector, says: “We ask for the presence of the government, we are even without water, without food and without sustenance, we do not even have fish to go fishing; this can last a month until there is fish again and we support our families merely from fishing and we are helpless, we have to drink from this water because we do not have an aqueduct.”

Just prior to this, on February 1, PBI-Colombia posted: “We accompanied @credhos_paz in Yondó #Antioquia during their water testing in order to assess the impact of different industries in the region, such as palm monocultures, mining and oil companies, among others. These water sources supply communities in this municipality. #RightToWater”

You can read more about that at: PBI-Colombia accompanies CREDHOS as it tests water in Yondó, calls for the right to water to be respected (PBI-Canada, February 3, 2024).

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