Itaipu Binacional's contributions to the Paris Agreement and to the goals of the 2030 Agenda are the main theme of two events that will be held in partnership with the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UNDESA), on December 7th and 9th, in Madrid (Spain), during the 25th UN Climate Change Conference (COP25).
Protection strip at Itaipu's Reservoir. Photo: Alexandre Marchetti/Itaipu Binacional.
The events are part of the Itaipu-UNDESA partnership "Sustainable Water and Energy Solutions" which aims to share good practices in promoting Sustainable Development Goals 6 (Clean Water and Sanitation) and 7 (Affordable and Clean Energy) with institutions and governments around the world, and their connections to the other SDGs that make up the 2030 Agenda.
"Itaipu is a company whose main mission is to generate energy from a renewable source, which is water. In order to be able to do this in the long term, it invests in various actions that aim to ensure the quality and quantity of water, and also benefiting other uses of the reservoir, such as municipal supply, agricultural production, and wild life conservation. And, in this way, it contributes to the sustainable development of the region", says the Brazilian General Director of Itaipu, Joaquim Silva e Luna.
To protect its reservoir, Itaipu maintains more than 100,000 hectares of forests. In 2018, the Brazilian margin was recognized as a Biosphere Reserve by Unesco, a title that the Paraguayan margin had already received the previous year.
Itaipu maintains more than 100,000 hectares of forests. Photo: Alexandre Marchetti/Itaipu Binacional.
These areas are responsible for various ecosystem services (services that nature provides by itself), such as:
the annual capture of almost 6 million tons of carbon equivalent (contributing to the goals of SDG 13 – Climate Action);
allowing the circulation of animals and the dispersion of seeds, acting as ecological corridors for flora and fauna species (SDG 15 – Life on Land);
helping to infiltrate water into the soil and protect springs and water bodies, preventing the accumulation of sediments (SDG 6);
and increasing the life span of the reservoir, ensuring the generation of clean and renewable energy in the long run (SDG 7).
Action on SDGs 6, 7, 13 and 15 will be detailed in case studies to be launched in Madrid, with the presence of UNDESA's executive undersecretary, Liu Zhenmin, who said that "every large company should know Itaipu's experience on how to put the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development into practice”.
"The environmental care of the reservoir's surroundings and the other actions that the company undertakes in this territory benefit not only power generation, but the region as a whole. This is a concept currently present in the company's strategy. It is part of our business", says Itaipu's Coordination Director, Luiz Felipe Carbonell.
In addition to Carbonell, the Itaipu delegation will also include the Paraguayan councilor, Gerardo Blanco; the head of the Reservoir and Protected Areas Division - Paraguayan Margin, Hilario Hermosa; and the superintendent of Environmental Management - Brazilian Margin, Ariel Scheffer da Silva.
Itaipu's Contributions to the Paris Agreement
The Climate Change Conference takes place annually, bringing together the members of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). Its decisions are always collective and consensual and can only be taken by unanimity among the parties.
In 2015, the UNFCCC produced the Paris Agreement, ratified by 183 countries and the European Union, with the main objective of joining efforts to maintain the global temperature increase at a maximum of 2°C above pre-industrial levels. To this end, each signatory country presents its Nationally Determined Contribution (NDCs), with actions and commitments to limit warming.
Itaipu collaborates with the commitments assumed by both Brazil and Paraguay, with the supply of abundant renewable energy (annual production is about 90 million Megawatt-hours, enough to supply Spain for four months), forest restoration actions and encouragement of environmentally correct practices in agriculture (such as direct planting, which reduces emissions from agriculture, and the use of livestock waste for the production of electric, thermal and vehicular energy), among others.
Technical event organized by ITAIPU and UNDESA - Download concept note
Part I (9h30-11h): UNDESA - Water and Energy, SDG Case Studies.
Part II (11h30-13h): ITAIPU - Solutions in Water, Energy and Ecosystem Services.
Participants: Representatives of Itaipu; Secretary of International Relations of the Ministry of the Environment of Brazil, Roberto Castelo Branco; General Director of Water at the Ministry for the Ecological Transition of Spain, Manuel Menéndez; Head of the UN Climate Change and Biodiversity Program, Valeria Kapos; Director of the National Directorate of Climate Change at the Ministry of Environment of Paraguay, Ulises Lovera.