It’s been a year since the murder of Berta Cáceres, activists for human rights and the environment from Honduras, who fearlessly fought to defend the river Gualcarque of Agua Zarca dam.
Berta Cáceres (1972-2016): “To commit life to protect rivers means to devote to the welfare of humanity and our planet. We need to build a society that is able to coexist in a fair and dignified manner, in a manner that protects life. “
Centar za životnu sredinu/Friends of the Earth Bosnia and Herzegovina marked this sad anniversary with the message that the spirit of Berta lives also in the rivers of Bosnia and Herzegovina and in the struggle we’re having to defend them from harmful hydropower projects.
Since 2009, Honduras had a rapid development of destructive mega-projects which are displacing native populations and destroy the environment. Almost 30% of the countrys land has been marked for concessions for mining, which led to the need for low-cost energy, which would allow it. To meet this need, the government has approved hundreds of such projects across the country, privatising rivers and land, and eradicating and local communities. Among them was the Agua Zarca hydroelectric joint project of Desarrollos Energeticos SA from Honduras and Chinese Sinohydro company, the world’s largest builder hydropower. Project Agua Zarca on the Gualcarque river was pushed through without consultation with the indigenous population, which is a violation of international agreements related to their rights. The project, if it is to be accomplished, will deny access to water, food and medicine for hundreds of Lenca people, and therefore violate their right to sustainable management and life in their own country.