Monthly Archives: June 2018

Social conflict over wind power in Brazil

I am happy to post this mini-documentary on the social conflicts and land grabbing as a result of the wind-power boom in Ceara, Brazil.  Low-carbon projects are not inherently socially just. Innovation requires not only technological change but attention to the social and economic structures – and how they are either changed, reinforced and for whom.  Loss of water access, land access, and thus livelihoods on Ceara’s coastal region. Green does not translate to good. Check out the Instagram account for the LaboCart Research group at UFC responsible for this project – click here.

Also, check out this short review of the process behind this documentary – click here

 

Emerging water conflict in Fortaleza, Brazil

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“Do not take our water.” A simple message.  Don’t take our water. Over the past ten months, communities in the peripheral northwest region of Fortaleza, Brazil have begun to organize against the state’s “water security plan” to manage the five-year drought for the metropolitan region of 3.5 million people. The plan, which attends to the broader needs of water supply, reworks how the overall regional system utilizes surface water.  While superficial strategies addressed conservation, the larger strategy targeted structural and infrastructural change — drilling horizontal, industrial groundwater wells and installing major water transfers– to move water to the special economic zone and steel industrial complex on the coast.  The change would then, theoretically, reduce the industrial complex’s dependency on the region’s scarce surface water resources.  Communities adjacent to the industrial complex  protest the water transfers and deep wells, fearing that this will reduce their traditional access, for some, and for others living and depending on the shallow groundwater, reduce their individual water security.  Indeed, it seems that one’s water security is another’s water insecurity, and the resulting social protest and continued backlash will continue.  We will keep posting about this emerging water conflict as the months go by.

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Lagamar protest encampment on aquaduct infrastructure slated to transfer water from the local water source to the industrial complex  (Wendy Jepson, January 2018).