U.S. Water News Online
CURITIBA, Brazil -- Delegates at the First International Meeting of Dam-Affected People have demanded an immediate international moratorium on the building of large dams. Attendees of the meeting held here said the moratorium should last until a number of demands are met, including the provision of reparations to the millions of people whose livelihoods have suffered because of dams.
The "Declaration of Curitiba," which was endorsed by representatives of dam-affected people and dam opponents from 20 countries, also demanded that no dam be built without the approval of the affected people "after an informed and participative decision-making process."
Other conditions on lifting the moratorium include the following:
The declaration states that "it is both necessary and possible to bring an end to the era of destructive dams. It is also both necessary and possible to implement alternative ways of providing energy and managing our fresh waters which are equitable, sustainable, and effective."
All over the world, the declaration states, "dams force people from their homes, submerge fertile farmlands, forests and sacred places, destroy fisheries and supplies of clean water, and cause the social and cultural disintegration and economic impoverishment of our communities."
To symbolize the growing unity of dam opponents around the world, the Declaration of Curitiba announces that each year March 14 will be the International Day of Action Against Dams and for Rivers, Water, and Life.
In addition to international representatives, the meeting was attended by 70 representatives from all regions of Brazil, from the Uruguay River Basin in the far south to the remote communities in the Amazonian north.
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