Honduran National Authorities Dialogue on Governance in the Goascorán River Binational Watershed

Representatives of national public and private institutions involved with watersheds participate in a capacity-building workshop on water governance in the Goascorán Binational Watershed

Participantes del Taller en Honduras

Honduras, February 2012 (IUCN). The binational watershed of the Goascorán River extends 2345.5 km2 and is shared between Honduras and El Salvador. Due to its location and natural wealth, the territory is one of environmental, economic and geopolitical importance, giving rise to processes of transboundary management such as the creation of the Goascorán River Binational Manager Group.

To strengthen these initiatives, in the frame of the BRIDGE Project: Constructing Dialogues and Good Water Governance on Rivers, on February 2nd the Secretariat of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and the Honduran organization Fundación Vida, with the support of the Secretariat of Foreign Relations, organized the workshop, “Strengthening Capacities for Governance of Water in the Goascorán River Binational Watershed.”

The objective was for participants to share knowledge about aspects related to international watersheds, and especially evaluation and consolidation of the platform for governance in this binational watershed. Participating in the event were more than 50 people from Honduran institutions, including the Secretariats of Foreign Relations, Natural Resources and Environment, Social Development, and Planning, as well as universities, the private sector, cooperation agencies, and others.

The workshop addressed such topics as watersheds, the ecosystem approach, integrated water resource management, human rights and the right to water, international water law and cooperation, and transboundary watershed governance. Special emphasis was also given to the case of the binational watershed of the Goascorán River.

Participants examined the challenges and opportunities this binational watershed represents for Honduras in environmental, political, juridical and institutional arenas. This exercise revealed that Honduran authorities, private institutions and cooperation recognize the socioeconomic importance of the watershed and the need to establish both national, and binational management mechanisms with El Salvador.

The BRIDGE project is executed by Fundación Vida in the Goascorán river basin together with the IUCN Regional Office for Mesoamerica and IUCN Environmental Law Centre, and is funded by the Hydro-Diplomacy Program of the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (COSUDE). Its main objective is to build water governance capacity through learning, demonstration, leadership, and consensus-building in particular transboundary watersheds.

For more information write to nazareth.porras@iucn.org

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