2nd Face-to-Face Meeting - Latin American Network of Environmental Security - Regional Programme Energy Security and Climate Change in Latin America
The event, which was held with the support of the Colombian Navy and the Colombian National Police in San Andres, Providencia and Santa Catalina, began with welcoming remarks by the director of the National Police, Colonel Manuel Armando Quintero Medina; the director of the EKLA Regional Program, Julia Sandner; and the coordinator of the Latin American Environmental Security Network, Professor Eduardo Pastrana.
During the first two days, the Network had the opportunity to meet with local and national authorities to hear about environmental safety and maritime governance issues in the Central American Caribbean region. Arne Britton Gonzalez, Director of CORALINA - Corporation for the Sustainable Development of the Archipelago of San Andres, Providencia and Santa Catalina, gave a presentation on the organization's work in the conservation of the SeaFlower Biosphere Reserve and the preservation of marine life in the region. At the request of the Colombian government, UNESCO evaluated these characteristics based on specific criteria and on November 10, 2000, declared the Archipelago, with its terrestrial and marine territory, a Seaflower Biosphere Reserve. This means that economic and social development models can and should be implemented in these islands with a sustainable use of natural resources with the active participation of the community and its governments.
Network participants were also able to listen to the executive undersecretary of the Colombian Ocean Commission, Frigate Captain Julio Cristancho Rivera, for a discussion on maritime governance in Colombia and the representative of the Government of San Andres, Providencia and Santa Catalina, Johan Mancilla, on the challenges and good practices of environmental governance in the archipelago.
Presentations were also made by Colonel William Castaño Ramos, director of Carabineros and Environmental Protection of the National Police, on human security and environmental security from the perspective of citizen security, and Vice Admiral Hernando Enrique Mattos Dager, commander of the Caribbean Naval Force, on the role of the Colombian Navy in issues of sovereignty, fishing, drug trafficking and international cooperation in the Caribbean region.
In addition, Network participants were able to share their presentations of the chapters of the book "Strategies for Environmental Governance and Security in Latin America," which will soon be published and available free of charge. Strategies, possible solutions and recommendations for environmental and climate challenges in the region were discussed, moderated by KAS Colombia Project Coordinator, Andrea Valdelamar, and the Network's Project Assistant, Miguel Burgos.
On the third day, the Network had the opportunity to make a technical visit to Old Point Mangrove Regional Park and Johnny Cay Regional Park to learn about the region's flora and fauna reserves. The group was accompanied by experienced local marine biologists who presented the terrestrial and marine biodiversity and care and preservation practices in the archipelago. It was three days of immersion and exchange of knowledge on topics such as marine biosphere, maritime governance and environmental security in Latin America.