Revival of El Diquís Hydroelectric Project in Costa Rica

A story that has now been going on for twenty years could be resumed with the adoption of a legal framework to be used to consult with the natives living in the area where the 650 MW plant would be built.

Wednesday, March 16, 2016


Finally, there is a legal framework to start once and for all the "intercultural dialogue" that is needed to give the green light to the construction of one of the most important hydroelectric projects for the future energy supply of the country.

A statement by the Solis administration states that "... The consultation with Indigenous Peoples is the State 's obligation to consult in a manner that is free , planned and publicised, using the appropriate procedures and through their representative institutions, whenever legislative or administrative measures are foreseen which may affect them directly. "

See also "How to Ensure Eternal Poverty for Indigenous People"

One aspect that concerns the new rules of indigenous consultation is that "... the process of building the mechanism will be the result of dialogue rather than imposition". It will even "... establish a general road map, in which the Regional Meetings will be responsible for defining the methodology of the process, guiding principles and content of the Mechanism."

The hydroelectric project El Diquís was conceived in 1996 to be the country's largest dam, and probably the largest in Central America, with capacity to generate up to 650 MW. Its implementation is essential to ensure the prevalence of the use of renewable energy resources in the country. Despite being still on paper, the Costa Rican Electricity Institute has already invested more than $100 million in research and analysis.

See also: "Electricity, Indigenous People, Development"

The hope now is that the intercultural dialogue will not take another twenty years, compromising the energy matrix and the future development of the country.

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