Map on popular alternative proposals of envisioning infrastructure

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Map made by ODG Mapping team* for ECA Watch, launched on October 29th 2014

We’re very pleased to share with you a Map on popular alternative proposals of envisioning infrastructure, made jointly with the ECA Watch network. Below you can find the Press Release. The main aim of this map (that doesn’t have the pretention to be exhaustive, of course) is to spread information, proposals and contribute to link people and groups with each other, in order to enrich the narrative on alternative infrastructure. The Map is one illustration among others, of the fact that there are popular proposals in front of megainfrastructures projects too often are responsible of the privatization of common goods. Those alternatives are the ones proposed in order to fulfill real needs instead of contriving needs that deserve the capital interests, in the North and the South. The indicators we used, in the sectors of energy, water and transport are the following:

  •     Actors: Civil Society but specifically Social Movements proposals
  •     Proposals based on real popular needs. Paying attention to: Who decides? Who benefits? Decision-making accountable structure.
  •     Paying attention to proposals linked to reclaiming the commons
  •     Proposals in Southern and Northern countries.
  •     Low carbon alternatives

*Authors of the Map: Raül Sánchez, Nicola Scherer, Mónica Guiteras,  Pau Miró, Delphine Ortega, Alfons Pérez, Mónica Vargas


Brussels, 29 October 2014

Global NGO network launches a Map that shows popular alternative proposals for infrastructure to encourage public finance institutions to invest in better projects.

ECA Watch, a network of non-governmental organizations campaigning for reform of public finance institutions (e.g. Export Credit Agencies as CESCE) and better implementation of social, environmental and human rights standards launched today a “Map on popular alternative proposals of envisioning infrastructure”.  Linde Zuidema, coordinator of ECA Watch at NGO FERN, says: “The Map can serve as a mean to inform people and support networks on sustainable infrastructure”. The map initially shows cases in Africa, Latin America and Europe. In the future the map will be complemented with more cases throughout the globe.

According to Mónica Vargas, one of the initiators of the project at the Observatory on Debt in Globalisation (ODG), member of ECA Watch: “Infrastructures should be planned paying attention to issues such as: Who decides? Who benefits? The cases selected for the Map show that there are alternative proposals, exemplary because of their ability to respect the needs of all stakeholders instead of just fulfilling capital interests in the North and the South. The main objective of the map is to spread information, proposals and contribute to linking people and groups with each other, in order to enrich the narrative on alternative infrastructure”.

ECA Watch developed the map initially to show cases in the energy, water and transport sector.  An example in the energy sector is the National Energy Proposal of the Movimento dos Atingidos por Barragens (Movement of People affected by Dams in Brazil), which includes a Platform that responds to the impacts of large hydroelectric dams in Brazil, integrating people affected by dams (farmers, fishers, indigenous peoples) as well as workers in the energy sector. Its aim is to build another energy model, that plans and organises popular control over the production and distribution of energy, as well as over the wealth it generates.  The idea is also to allocate resources and energy generation to people’s real needs, as well as to ensure the protection of the environment. Another example, in the water sector is the Italian Water Referendum of 2011 and its results:  the intention to prevent water privatization and to consider water as a common good. The initiative proposes management of water systems at the municipal level and avoid any interference by free market principles.

More information:

ODG Mapping Team,
Mónica Vargas , Observatory on Debt in Globalisation (ODG),
Linde Zuidema, Eca Watch Coordinator, FERN,

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