First Evaluation Report on CAFTA-DR Environmental Cooperation.
16,3MB - 164 pages
Legal Institutional Frameworks for Payment for Ecosystem Services: Eight Country Analysis
4,27MB - 52 pages
Environmental Sustainability in the Americas
Ever since the Bruntland Commission introduced the concept of Sustainable Development in its seminal
report, Our Common Future, Governments and their development partners at the national, regional and
international level have struggled to operationalize the concept in development policies, programs and
plans. Part of the reason for this struggle is because sustainability is a highly complex concept that
over time has come to mean different things to different people.
Despite these differences in opinion, there is broad consensus that the earth's resources are being
consumed at a faster rate than the rate at which they are being replenished. This realization has led
to a growing appreciation of the importance of ensuring that the contribution that natural resources
make to the development process is sustained over time. Encouraging progress has been made in developing
"smart" indicators to alert natural resource users to instances when resource thresholds are being exceeded
and when remedial action is required. Governments are now armed with a wide array of policies, laws and
strategies to bring about some degree of equilibrium between resource use and replenishment. The growing
participation of the private sector and civil society organizations in the quest for sustainability is noteworthy.
Throughout the hemisphere, there are signs that voluntary compliance with and monitoring of environmental and
trade laws are increasing.
Still, numerous challenges remain in promoting access to water and land; in managing climate related risks and
generally in improving environmental governance. This policy brief examines some of these challenges and proposes
some policy responses. Also, the Brief examines the implications of a worsening global financial crisis for
efforts at improving environmental sustainability.
Binational Master Plan for Integral Development of the Lake Titicaca, Desaguadero River, Poopó, Coipasa Salt Marsh
System (TDPS System)
Executive Summary in English (1996)
The TDPS region is characterized by overlapping cultural and economic systems in which a vast agrarian subsistence
economy exists side by side with agricultural sectors directed at regional and national markets and with a mining
industry looking abroad. The impact on natural resources has varied, but in every case their consumption and
depletion are not included in the costs of production. The ancestral values based on respect for "Mother Earth" have
largely died out, and nature is perceived as an inexhaustible fount of resources and a waste dump. The widespread
poverty and low levels of education prevent the population from developing an awareness of the limits on their
resources, and only in the wake of major natural catastrophes such as droughts and floods have some sectors of the
society begun to think about the cause-and-effect relationship between the use and management of natural resources and
A change in behavior toward the natural environment, especially on the part of those sectors causing it the most harm
(mining, mining-based industry, urban concentration) requires a change in attitude based on an understanding of, and
respect for, the region's physical and biological processes, its natural and cultural-anthropological values, and the
right of its indigenous peoples to emerge from poverty by receiving a growing share of the return on the development
of its resources. This change in outlook requires more effective action by the state, with a comprehensive policy
including the creation and enforcement of legal, institutional and fiscal mechanisms and economic incentives and resources
designed to further sustainable development in the region. Real participation by the local communities in administering
the areas within their jurisdiction is also needed.
The present environmental assessment is an important step toward those ends.
851Kb - 42 pages
Binational Programs for Border Cooperation - A Model for the Development of the Amazon Region (1993)
The document summarizes the objectives, methodological approach, and principal conclusions and recommendations of the
binational plans, programs, and projects being executed by the Amazonian countries with the cooperation of the General
Secretariat of the OAS.
The general purpose of the border plans and programs is to create conditions for sustainable development. The plans also
seek to explore the development potential of the border areas in terms of population, ecosystems, and natural resources,
with a view to incorporating these areas into the countries' economies. They are intended not only to deal with the specific
problems of each border area, but also to serve as models for extending environmentally sound development planning to other
parts of the Amazon region.
851Kb - 42 pages
Binational Projects - Colombia-Peru --- Brazil-Peru
In April of 1988, the Presidents of Colombia and Peru met in the town of San Antonio, on the Amazon River, and signed a
Joint Declaration agreeing to a Bilateral Action Plan to carry out the Plan for the Integral Development of the Putumayo
River Basin, to be executed within the framework of the Joint Committee for the Colombian-Peruvian Amazon Cooperation Treaty.
Their ministries of foreign affairs were asked to jointly negotiate financial support from international organizations,
especially the Organization of American States. The first meeting of the Joint Committee took place in August 1988 in Leticia,
Colombia, capital of Amazonas Department. In this meeting, the terms of reference for the drafting of the Plan for the Integral
Development of the Putumayo River Basin (PPCP) were approved.
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Conservation of Biodiversity and the New Regional Planning (1995)
This book is a next step in the ongoing characterization of sustainable development. It is a set of conclusions drawn from
case descriptions and methods that look at the "why" and "how" of the new regional planning. Chapters 1, 2, 3 and 4 make
the case for the importance of both wild and cultured biodiversity; Chapters 5, 6 and 7 give instructions on how attention
can be given to special parts of the overall effort; Chapter 8 links the topic to the recently ratified Convention on
Biological Diversity; and Chapters 9, 10 and 11 discuss experiences from the well-known cases of La Amistad International
Park in Costa Rica and Panama, the Greater Yellowstone Coalition in the United States, and CAMPFIRE in Zimbabwe as they fit
into the parameters of the new regional planning.
744Kb - 117 pages
Disaster, Planning and Development: Managing Natural Hazards to Reduce Loss (1990)
After seven years of field work it is now possible to prepare this synthesis of OAS experience with natural hazards.
The material comes with a broad set of objectives, a reflection of the breadth of the issues involved in hazard mitigation.
At the policy level, it is hoped that national planning ministries, development agencies, and international financing
institutions will be encouraged to systematically include analyses of natural hazards in their economic development programs.
2,054Kb - 141 pages
Environmental Management and Sustainable Development of the San Juan River Basin
Executive Summary in English (1997)
In October of 1994, UNEP and GS/OAS signed an Agreement in which both organizations agreed to support Costa Rica and
Nicaragua the two countries in carrying out this Project. The project's main objectives were defined as those relating
to human development and the preservation of natural resources and ecosystems. The following aspects were given priority:
(a)Management and preservation of shared basins and water resources; (b)Management of protected areas and preservation of
biodiversity; (c) Incentives for the development of sustainable economic activities; (d) Overcoming the population's
conditions of poverty, and attention to indigenous groups; and (e) Institutional strengthening and legislation which would
reconcile key issues at the border and Central American level.
6.710Kb - 334 pages
Environmental Quality and River Basin Development: A Model for Integrated Analysis and Planning (1978)
This document is the result of nearly two years of work by the staff of the Program of Regional Development, Argentine
coworkers, and several international consultants (Appendix A). Every effort has been made to make the content and prose
applicable to the needs of project directors and field staff working in the planning of river basin development.
Consequently, scientific and specialized terminology have been kept to a minimum and the recommendations have been
made in full consideration of the realities of developing countries. The document has been purposefully kept short to
give it the character of a guidebook rather than that of an exhaustive treatise on the subject of environment and development.
Although the methodology has been designed to guide the early planning stages of river basin development in semiarid regions
of the developing world, much of it is applicable to regional and sectoral planning efforts in the more humid regions.
Similarly, it should find use as a text and reference material in those training centers and institutions that relate to
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Evaluation of the Potential Industrial Environmental Impacts of the FTAA Brazil Case Study
This assessment focused on the industrial sector and indicated that the main environmental changes with the possible
implementation of FTAA could include water contamination and detriment in air quality due to outdoor air pollution.
However, the assessment highlights that those industries that could affect air quality in Brazil use environmentally
friendly technologies in order to meet sustainability and market access requirements of the export markets. Additionally,
this assessment examines the Brazilian legal-institutional frameworks and the internalization of environmental cost by
industry, concluding that these costs do not affect competitiveness. Finally, this assessment includes some
recommendations for regulating entities in terms of promoting efficiency and competitiveness of the Brazilian industrial sector.
314.16KB - 49 pages
Improving Collaboration Between the World Bank and the Organization of American States on Environmental Issues in Latin
America and the Caribbean (1999)
The paper proposes specific institutional measures to foster a more active partnership between the World Bank Socially and
Environmentally Sustainable Development Sector Management Unit (IBRD/LCSES) and the Unit for Sustainable Development and
Environment of the OAS (OAS/DSD), key international NGOs, and the Global Environment Facility (GEF). It explores the constraints
to collaboration, analyzes trends in development assistance, and sketches a general framework for strengthening levels of
collaboration among technical assistance and donor organizations active in natural resource management issues in Latin America
and the Caribbean. Biodiversity, water resources, and disaster reduction proposals and projects are suggested as examples of how
an improved collaborative framework between the Bank, the OAS, and cooperating institutions can be implemented. Improving the
climate for donor coordination is in the best interest of both client nations and the assistance community.
111Kb - 37 pages
Integrated Land Development - The Case of the Mabouya Valley in Saint Lucia (1991)
A critical problem facing agricultural development in the Eastern Caribbean is the acute scarcity of arable land. Concentrated
ownership of best lands compounds this scarcity. The majority of the rural population is left to farm small holdings on
unsuitable hillsides. In turn, this intensive cultivation of hillsides triggers a complex process of soil erosion and
environmental degradation of entire watersheds. Isolated soil-conservation efforts have at best been palliative. The roots
of the problem remain in land scarcity.
This volume, designed as a follow-up to the original report, addresses the Morne Panache Pilot Project, the LRTP, and the
Mabouya Valley Development Project. Together, the results of these projects illustrate the importance of an integrated approach
to land issues, an approach that deals not only with the consequences of problems, but also with causes. The Department of
Regional Development and Environment at the OAS is pleased to have cooperated with the Government of St. Lucia in this effort
and believes that the following account may be helpful to other governments faced with similar development challenges.
1,102Kb - 66 pages
Integrated Regional Development Planning: Guidelines and Case Studies from OAS Experience (1984)
Reviewing 20 years of experience with integrated regional development planning is a humbling exercise. Mistakes and failed
plans stand out clearly with the perspective of time, but so do the occasional successfully implemented projects that flowed
from the plans. Less obvious but perhaps equally satisfying are the mistakes avoided because of the plans. DRD draws here
exclusively on its own field experience in Latin America, leaving it to other technical assistance agencies to catalog theirs.
Accordingly, the emphasis in this book is on the development of natural resources, energy, infrastructure, agriculture, industry,
human settlements, and social services. In these accounts, we believe, are information and ideas of use to developing-country
governments from the local to the national levels, sectoral agencies, river basin authorities, regional development corporations,
other technical assistance groups, and - most of all - field study managers.
6,637Kb - 313 pages
Inter-American Strategy for the Promotion of Public Participation in Decision-Making for Sustainable Development (2001)
The formulation of this innovative strategy is a prompt response to a mandate entrusted to the OAS by the 1996 Bolivia Summit
Conference on Sustainable Development. For almost three years, the DSD led an open and participatory process to give shape to
the ISP, working with public sector and civil society organizations in the 34 member states in conducting technical studies,
seminars, and extensive consultations. This broad consultation process gave governments, civil society organizations, and other
stakeholders in the Americas the opportunity to exchange ideas and opinions regarding the recommendations and principles to be
taken into account in the design, implementation, and evaluation of participatory projects, policies, or programs. As a result,
the ISP contains principles and policy recommendations aimed at achieving greater involvement of all sectors of society in the
making of decisions on sustainable development and environment.
Minimum Conflict: Guidelines for Planning the Use of American Humid Tropic Environments (1987)
This document represents the Phase I report of the OAS/UNEP/Government of Peru sponsored project: "Case Study of Environmental
Management: Integrated Development of An Area in the Humid Tropics - The Selva Central of Peru." To a large degree this effort
is a follow-up of the OAS/UNEP/Government of Argentina study of the Upper Bermejo River Basin of Argentina in 1975-1977 which
sought to develop a planning methodology for river basins in semiarid areas. The results of this early study were published in
1978 as a small book, Environmental Quality and River Basin Development: A Model for Integrated Analysis and Planning.
Both of these studies have their basis in Resolution 61 of the 1972 United Nations Conference on the Human Environment Action
Plan, which requests that research be undertaken to design practical planning methodologies for distinct categories of development
activity in specific individual biomes and which would include "concern for the environment" as an integral part of development
3,375Kb - 283 pages
Natural Resource and Environmental Accounts for Development Policy (1994)
In recent years, a fundamental change has taken place in the way national governments and the international community measure
and think about countries' economic performance. Leading economists now agree that national income accounting should treat
natural resources as it does other tangible economic assets. Standard-setting agencies, such as the United Nations Statistical
Office, have formulated new methodological guidelines. More and more industrialized and developing countries are constructing
revised resource and environmental accounts in order to make them more relevant to sound environmental management and sustainable
development. In our own hemisphere, while Canada and the United States have taken the lead in this initiative, other countries are
also taking steps to initiate the process of revision. In serving as host of the seminar reported on in this document, the OAS is
pleased to have provided, through a joint effort with the World Resources Institute, a pioneering hemispheric forum for discussion
of the issues arising from its member countries' new and incipient accounting experiences.
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Peru - Bolivia Integrated Action Program (PAIPB), Summary in English
2,802Kb - 148 pages
Physical Planning and Management Plan for the San Miguel and Putumayo River Basins (PSP), Executive Summary in English (1987)
Under the Amazon Cooperation Treaty, the governments of Colombia and Ecuador signed a cooperation agreement in 1979 to promote and
oversee the two countries' bilateral activities in the Amazonian region. In 1985, both governments reaffirmed the need to
encourage sectoral activities in the border region and decided to begin to draw up a binational action plan to steer regional
development towards sustainable development objectives that were compatible with their fragile ecological systems. Thus, in 1986,
the Physical Planning and Management Plan for the San Miguel and Putumayo River Basins (PSP) was approved and initiated.
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Plan and Policy for a System of National Parks and Protected Areas
Grenada is in the process of better defining its land use policy. The national parks and protected areas program is an important
step towards viewing the finite resource of land in a multiple use context. Grenada's actions in the protection of the upper
watersheds and important ecosystems, promotion of cultural and natural attractions, and the development of educational and tourism
programs are noteworthy in this respect.
The methodology for the establishment and management of a system of national parks and protected areas was developed by a team of
national and international specialists working together under the direction of the Ministry of Agriculture. The inventory of the
natural and cultural resource base relied on an interdisciplinary team made up of fisheries, forestry, land use, extension, and
physical planning personnel as well as first-hand information of local hikers, naturalists and historians.
In conjunction with this report, and as part of the Government of Grenada/OAS Integrated Development Project, land policy and
infrastructure development guidelines have also been defined. A zoning map has been generated to identify productive agricultural
and grazing lands, especially in the southeast section of the island of Grenada where development pressures are most intense. The
goal of these efforts is to protect and develop the natural resources of Grenada and Carriacou.
2,807Kb - 144 pages
Plan for Integral Development of the Putumayo River Basin
Executive Summary in English (1993)
In concurrence with the objectives, policies and strategies specified in each country's Amazonian Development Plan, the overall
PPCP goals can be summarized as follows: (a) To promote the harmonious and sustained development of the area; (b) To integrate
the area with the rest of the territory by constructing roads and other transportation facilities and establishing
communication links, as well as through political, cultural, social and economic inter-action; (c) To improve the population's
standard of living; (d) To concentrate, in the native communities, on substantially improving the handling of territorial issues,
and the provision of basic social and health services, including the conservation of areas traditionally inhabited by such
communities while protecting the fundamental rights of those communities, and, in particular, their social and cultural integrity;
(e) To promote research and the compilation of information on the area.
4.930Kb - 172 pages
Primer on Natural Hazard Management in Integrated Regional Development Planning (1991)
Following the El Niño occurrence of 1982-83, the member states of the Organization of American States (OAS) expressed the need
for technical cooperation in natural hazard management. In response, the Department of Regional Development and Environment
(DRDE) initiated the Natural Hazard Project with support from the Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance (OFDA) of the U.S.
Agency for International Development (AID).
The need for this book became clear through field work and discussions with planning agency counterparts and representatives of
other development assistance agencies. Great strides were made in the past two decades in emergency preparedness and response,
but up to now insufficient attention has been paid to reducing the vulnerability of existing and planned development. After
seven years of field work, it is now possible to prepare this synthesis of OAS experience with this neglected subject.
7,700Kb - 520 pages
Program for Development of the Peruvian-Brazilian Border Communities
Executive Summary in English (1992)
In accordance with the objectives, policies, and strategies contained in the development plans for the Amazon region in both
countries, the general objectives for the development of the border communities are as follows: a) improvement of the living
standards of the population; b) determination of the appropriate use of the areas natural resources, with a view toward
sustainable development; c) binational integration of the area into the remainder of the territory of the two countries,
through the efficient use of their natural resources and the fostering of effective occupation of the border areas.
3.060Kb - 157 pages
Report of the Secretary General on Bolivia Summit Implementation (1998)
In the context of the institutional arrangements set up in Santa Cruz de la Sierra, Bolivia, the Secretary General of the
Organization American States was given the mandate to submit a report on progress attained in the implementation of the
initiatives of the Plan of Action on Sustainable Development. The report, to be made available prior to the 1998 Summit of the
Americas, was intended as a follow-up on the commitments entered into in Bolivia. This paper is in compliance with the
coordinating and follow-up roles entrusted to the OAS.
224Kb - 50 pages
Saint Lucia Natural Resources and Agricultural Development Project - Studies and Proposals for the Implementation of a Land
Registration Programme (1986)
The unique land tenure problems inherited by Saint Lucia have represented a major constraint for the development of the
agricultural sector. They are one of the most important factors preventing the farming community from diversifying production and
increasing productivity. Conscious of the complexity of the problem, and cognizant of the far-reaching social and economic impact
that possible solutions could have, the Government of Saint Lucia requested technical cooperation from the Organization of
American States. This cooperation had two objectives: to undertake the studies required to design feasible technical alternatives
and to identify complementary actions capable of taking full advantage of the solution of land tenure problems.
The present report synthesizes the technical studies undertaken during 1981 by a team of national and international specialists
working with the Ministry of Agriculture.
2,840 Kb - 235 pages
Sustainable Agriculture, Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) & The Private Sector of the "Financial Services Industry
230 Kb- 14 pages
Uruguay - National Environmental Study - Executive Summary (1992)
On May 4, 1989, the Government of Uruguay and the Inter-American Development Bank signed a technical cooperation agreement to
finance a national study that would help incorporate the environmental dimension into the development process of Uruguay.
This document synthesizes the findings of the study and provides an action plan to implement the strategy, projects and programs
that are based on these findings. In summary, the study established that a formal environmental policy was needed to meet the
national objectives of improved quality of life for the people of Uruguay.
433Kb - 39 pages