Mexico: Dam impacts on indigenous communities in Oaxaca

Photo credit: Accountability Counsel

In November 2010, indigenous communities filed a complaint to the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC)’s Office of Accountability concerning the impact of the Cerro de Oro dam on their safety, access to water, and fishing areas.  Following the complaint, OPIC set up dialogues between the affected communities and the companies in charge of the project.  Mexican civil society organizations, communities and the company reached an agreement to suspend the construction of the project, and to develop alternative projects that took key community concerns into account.

In November 2011, the alternative project design was rejected by three communities after hearing about the dam’s safety issues. As of August 2014, the project remains suspended and the company continues to respect the rights of the communities to reject the project.

Companies involved: Project developers: Electricidad del Oriente and Corporacion Mexicana de Hidroelectricidad (Comexhidro). Funders: Overseas Private Investment Corporation (via Conduit Capital Partners & Latin Power III Fund)

Further information: Accountability Counsel