The third Blue Deal work visit of this year to Peru took place from November 20 until December 6. This time, the focus was on flood prevention plans, water distribution and water purification – with the latter subject being tackled thoroughly for the first time.
In addition, work continued with the 2 Water Councils in Piura and Tumbes and their technical teams on the last stage of the update of the water management programs.
Workshops by experts
A Dutch specialist in wastewater treatment (installations) provided sessions on water treatment plants and visited several existing water treatment plants in the field. The intention is to provide further input for improvement on this subject in the coming years, together with other experts.
2 other Dutch experts provided workshops on forecasting water availability, spatial planning and climate-adaptive working. Field visits also gave them a better picture of the river basin and the problems faced by residents and water users, This will enable them to provide better input and feedback on the water management and distribution plans in both regions.
Economics and protection of ecosystems
Another 2 Dutch colleagues were working on project management matters for Phase 2 of the Blue Deal programme. They also consulted extensively with the drafters and the Water Councils on the flood prevention plans in both regions. Finally, the Dutch team was also able to educate themselves about how an important economic activity can (or cannot) go hand in hand with the protection of an important ecosystem, during a visit to the coastal shrimp farms and the nearby mangrove forests.
Boost for the programme
The work visit was concluded in Lima with consultations at the Dutch embassy and at the Autoridad Nacional de Agua (ANA) of Peru. Here, the team shared the final reports with the ANA headquarters and the Dutch embassy in Lima. They used this opportunity to address identified bottlenecks in the regional flood prevention plans that require action from Lima. Once again, the team concluded that personal contact and consultation through the work visits is essential to get things done, to initiate and to boost the programme.
On December 12, José Alberto del Corral Parodi visited the office of the Dutch water authority Noorderzijlvest in Groningen. Del Corral Parodi is Advisor Politics, Development and Trade and is the contact at the Dutch Embassy in Lima for the Blue Deal partnership in Peru. Water authority Noorderzijlvest is responsible for the partnership management of this partnership.
During the visit, Del Corral Parodi learned much about the organization and work of a water authority in the Dutch and international context. He also had the opportunity to see some project realizations during field visits. He always has been closely involved in the project implementation, and is very positive about the impact of the Blue Deal activities and method – regionally and nationally. That is why he is an excellent advocate for the Blue Deal Programme.
The goal of the visit was to inform him about the principal aspects of the functioning and activities of water authority Noorderzijlvest, and about the international cooperation activities of Dutch Water Authorities in the Blue Deal setting. Secondly, the Blue Deal was interested to hear about his point of view regarding the impact and importance of the Blue Deal programme in his country.
Besides meetings with the Dutch team, Del Corral Parodi visited De Onlanden, a water storage area that is part of a set of flood prevention measures. The team also showed him the climate adaptation measures in the industrial area Euvelgunne, in the city of Groningen.
From April 16 until April 30 a team from Dutch Water Authorities visited Peru for the Blue Deal. This was the second work visit since the corona pandemic.
The team spoke with its local partners, the water boards of Piura and Tumbes. Together they analysed the progress of their collaboration. The team also looked into the challenges of water scarcity and the distribution of the available water and where extra support from Dutch experts is needed. Another topic was the planning for the rest of the year and the second phase of the Blue Deal programme, which will last from 2023 until 2030.
Water scarcity and flooding
The work visit therefore consisted of a lot of meetings and discussions, for example with the National Water Authority and with users of the water and stakeholders. Field visits to several sites provided insight into the local situation. In both Piura and Tumbes the problem is pretty much identical: water scarcity during part of the year and danger of flooding during the rainy season. The work visit also showed that the quality of the surface water needs to be improved through waste water treatment plants.
The work visit strengthened the bonds between Dutch Water Authorities and the local partners and the perspectives for future collaboration have been broadened. The partnership aims to send in Dutch experts to Peru for several times in the coming years to establish a strong work relationship that helps to improve the water management in Peru. In between these work visits there will also be online meetings to exchange knowledge.
Thanks to the visit to the water council of Chira-Piura by the Dutch ambassador in Peru, a new impulse has been given to the partnership.
In the central square of Piura, a young professional gave an explanation about the Blue Deal to the ambassador and representatives of the agricultural council and the national water authority. Afterwards, they visited projects that should prevent flooding and improving agricultural irrigation.
The afternoon ended with a visit to the local government.
The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) published a report on water governance in Peru. Although Peru is making progress in water management, there are still issues with flooding, drought, pollution and access to clean water.
The OECD report provides an analysis of water governance in the country and gives policy recommendations to strengthen the multisectoral approach to water in Peru. For example, it recommends improving the use of economic instruments to protect and sustainably use water resources, its sources and related ecosystem services. Another recommendation is to strengthen regulatory conditions to improved access to safe drinking water and sanitation in urban and rural areas.
The KIWI learning programme recently organised a lecture by professor Guy Alaerts about the unruly nature of international water management and solutions for complex water problems.
Water managers worldwide are looking for integrated solutions for complex water problems. Major investments are often required to become climate proof, but finding financing is difficult. Water managers and financial institutions do not know where to find each other and converting globally available financing into concrete projects on a large scale is difficult. Watch the lecture below. The lecture is in Dutch, but can be viewed with subtitles.
On Thursday 21st January 2021 the annual water event ‘Expo Agua’ took place in Peru, showcasing the latest developments in water management and technology.
Expo Agua Peru is the country’s main water expo, where technological innovations and solutions for water resource management are presented. The event brings together leading companies in the field of water management to share experiences and solutions to the problems and challenges that face Peru and the Andean region.
Blue Deal Peru
During the ‘Expo Agua‘ event in Peru, the Peruvian Blue Deal partnership looked back on the partnership’s creation, its added value and the future. The National Water Authority and the water councils of Tumbes and Chira-Piura were also present.
TU Delft and Erasmus University, in collaboration with Dutch Water Authorities, have launched a study into water management knowledge exchange. The universities are investigating which lessons the Dutch regional water authorities take abroad.
As part of the study into water management knowledge exchange university researchers are looking at the lessons learned at an individual level, group level and organisational level. The aim is to find out exactly what effect these lessons have on organisations.
A questionnaire is sent out via the Dutch Water Authorities foreign coordinators. It is hoped that insight can be gained into the possibilities and limiting factors of international knowledge sharing.
The 2021 annual plan of the Blue Deal programme has been approved by the steering committee. The partnerships will continue their work in 2021 to improve water management in 14 countries.
The focus of the Blue Deal Annual plan 2021 is on three crucial elements: sufficient knowledge and skills, a well-functioning organisation and collaboration with key stakeholders.
As COVID-19 continues into 2021, the Blue Deal partnerships focus on online learning and training in the first six months. This is not easy in all countries, for example due to slow internet connections or recently initiated partnerships. Therefore, the partnerships also focus on additional local representation. Dutch Water Authorities hopes to physically meet its partners again in the second half of 2021.