By Oswaldo Salcedo R. *
Although La Paz has five large dams and Bolivia is among the countries with the highest amount of water in Latin America, the data indicate that it is the country with the largest water footprint, that is, it uses a lot of water, says the researcher and teacher Roger Carvajal. It is known that the main uses of water are at the domestic, industrial, municipal, hospital, and mining levels.
The physical scarcity of water is caused by deforestation, because within the water cycle when clouds reach the forests and do not find trees, they leave and rain does not occur. The Amazon but preserved is that of Bolivia. Therefore, it is not just a matter of “bombarding clouds” as some public officials claim, but of carrying out comprehensive water management.
It is known that in Bolivia each year the equivalent of 204,000 soccer fields are deforested, based on data from the Vice Ministry of the Environment. Between 2013 and 2014, about 251,000 hectares were deforested. The main causes of deforestation are livestock activities, oil exploitation, family and mechanized agriculture; To these factors would be added the construction of large hydroelectric plants that destroy thousands of hectares of forest to achieve their objectives.
In this sense, with the alleged construction of the “Chepete Mega-dam”, 60,000 hectares of forest would be flooded (average level) with hundreds of species of animals and native flora, in addition to forcibly relocating thousands of indigenous people to other regions; and at the millionaire cost of 6.337 million dollars, warned Ricardo Calla.
The mega-dam project contradicts what is indicated in the current Political Constitution of the State, because it will be located in Protected Areas such as the Madidi National Park and the Pilón Lajas Reserve, where the greatest biodiversity in Bolivia is concentrated.
Therefore, considering these warnings, let us ask that the truth triumph over the lie in the planning of new Hydroelectric projects and we avoid the deforestation of our forests, promoting environmental education plans with the entire population, so that another “water crisis is not repeated. ”. *Environmental educator