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AQUARISC Project: Ecotechnologies Workshop 2018

Updated: Nov 10, 2018

Working for the management of wetlands in water supply basins in Colombia. Eco-technology strategies were socialized at the Workshop on Ecotechnologies at the end of September, attended by about 150 people and led by the UNESCO Chair on Sustainability (Polytechnic University of Catalonia), within the framework of the AQUARISC project.

Thus, a 3-day event on ecotechnologies was unveiled in the framework of the Ecotechnology Workshop, which took place in the city of Popayán and in the Quintana sub-basin of the Río Piedras in the Popayán village.

In the first place, a day of recognition of the strategic conservation areas was held, with the participation of the Popayán Tap Water and Sewerage Company, headed by its Manager, Engineer Leonardo Orozco, and Dr. Liliana Recamán, Chief of the Environmental Management of the Río Las Piedras Foundation. During the activity, some places were identified, in which specific interventions will be carried out in order to manage the wetlands with the water quality of the sector.

"The objective is to start working with this river which is one of the main tributaries that supplies water to the Cauca capital, in order to improve its conservation, reduce pollutants and reuse rainwater with discharges to reach the river directly and it is not wasted, because the treatment wetlands and the lagoons are essential for purification and sanitation. We want to protect the wetland with more reservoirs, buffer strips and underground dams" said Jordi Morató, Coordinator of the UNESCO Chair on Sustainability.

For his part, Libardo Gurrute, social leader and member of the Río Piedras Foundation, thanked the work of the AQUARISC project on this front, as it will contribute to the efforts that the foundation has been making in that area. "We appreciate the intervention that the AQUARISC project will make in this wetland, we must preserve the nearly 6,600 hectares that make up this place. Although generally in times of little rain we have maintained the riverbed, in 2013 we had to connect alternate sources, due to the severe drought, "said Gurrute.

On the other hand, the community settled in the subbasin of this supply system showed all its support for the project and recognized that "the sustainable future and the care of water is fundamental for the preservation of the planet and future generations", as stated by the Mr. Mariano Volverás, Indigenous from the Cabildo Quintana and owner of one of the surrounding properties.

"Among the actions to be undertaken are the water rounds, the ecological restoration of wetlands and the implementation of buffer strips," said AQUARISC Principal Investigator Samir Joaqui Daza.

The project Vulnerability and Risk in Potable Water Systems - AQUARISC, which is executed in the Department of Cauca in Colombia, works for the management of ecosystem services of wetlands in river basins that supply the drinking water systems of the beneficiary municipalities with this initiative. The process is being led by the UNESCO Chair on Sustainability (Polytechnic University of Catalonia), an institution allied to the project.

Ecotechnologies, environmentally friendly techniques

The Seminar addressed eco-technologies for the transformation of good practices, the recovery of degraded urban areas, the management of treatment wetlands for pollutant removal, the circular economy in agriculture and inclusive and sustainable business.

The academic day was attended by several international speakers such as the Brazilian Heraldo Peixoto, from the Federal University of Bahia, who gave an overview of the Sustainable Management of Water Resources in Brazil.

Eco-technologies are a set of applied techniques that guarantee the use of natural resources in a clean manner, integrating the fields of study of ecology and technology. Its objective is to satisfy human needs by minimizing environmental impact, through knowledge of the structures and processes of ecosystems and society. Ecotechnology is considered to be all forms of ecological engineering that reduce damage to ecosystems, adopting permacultural, holistic and sustainable development foundations, in addition to having an orientation to minimize impact on its processes and operation, reducing the environmental footprint.

At the end of the event, it was concluded that for an effective use of eco-technologies, joint work with communities is fundamental. "The idea is to generate installed capacities in the territory and that is why these actions are aimed at the communities, because they are socially, environmentally, culturally and economically beneficial ", said Jordi Morató.

It should be remembered that AQUARISC is a project from the Government of Cauca, financed with funds from the Science, Technology and Innovation fund of the General System of Royalties - SGR and operated by Universidad del Valle; with support from the Environmental Studies Group of the Universidad del Cauca - GEA and the Regional Productivity and Innovation Center of Cauca - CREPIC.

Practical session in the field.

Dr. Prof. Heraldo Peixoto.

Director UNESCOSOST Bahia, Bahia-Brasil.

Pictures: Archivo UNESCOSOST / Proyecto AQUARISC


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