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Payments for environmental services and water management in the Peruvian Andes

Harvesting water to improve water regulation in the city of Abancay

 13 December 2019, Bogotá, Colombia. The Euroclima Plus programme under the framework of the sector inherent to “Water management with an urban resilience perspective” organised during the week of December 2 to 6, 2019, the second meeting between the French Development Agency (AFD) and the main partners of the project selected for the agreement: Water Forever for Abancay and Communities,: Developing strategies for urban resilience to climate change in the Mariño micro-basin. The AFD team was composed of Marco Varea, head of Euroclima+ at the Paris headquarters, Sylvain Lefevbre, team leader for the Water and Sanitation division in Paris, Pauline Poutrain, head of technical cooperation for AFD Peru, and Vincent Merme, technical advisor for Euroclima+ based in Bogota.

After a first institutional meeting in Lima to define the outline of the grant agreement with the project leader, SUNASS (National Superintendence of Sanitation Services), the technical operator in charge of the administrative and financial management of the project, Helvetas, and the AFD team travelled to the project intervention area in the city of Abancay in Apurimac Department.

This intervention falls under the legislative framework for the management and provision of sanitation services (Law No. 30215, Legislative Decree No. 1280), which establishes the modalities for implementing the Mechanisms of Retribution for Ecosystem Services (MERESE). It allows companies providing drinking water and sanitation services to be paid for the ecosystem services provided by the watershed in order to provide drinking water through agreements with communities living in the headwater areas.

The visit to Abancay began with a meeting with Empresa Prestadores de Servicio EMUSAP-Abancay, leader of the MERESE platform established in the Mariño micro-basin, and CEDES, a local organisation with extensive social work experience that will facilitate the work with farming communities. Each entity presented the work done so far and how it is articulated with the Euroclima+ project. With the funds collected from the tariff on drinking water services since 2018 through MERESE, two agreements have been signed with communities in the headwaters of the basin for water harvesting activities [construction of q'ochas (water recharge systems in high Andean micro watersheds), reforestation, revegetation, fencing, network of hydrometeorological instruments to measure the impacts of the actions taken]. Three more agreements will be signed with the project to reinforce the activities initiated in order to stabilise water regulation in the headwaters of the Mariño micro-basin, especially during the dry season. Under intense rain, the intervention zones were visited by people in charge of the rural communities of Micaela Bastidas and Atumpata.

After the field visit in the upper part of the watershed, the AFD team visited the drinking water treatment and distribution system in the city of Abancay in order to balance precisely the activities planned in the project to reduce water losses, improve pressure control, or study the possibility of automating the system. Signing of the grant agreement is planned or early 2020.  

EUROCLIMA+ component Water management with an urban resilience perspective

A total of seven projects will be implemented through this component of the EUROCLIMA+ programme. For more information on each project visit this link:


EUROCLIMA+ is a programme funded by the European Union to promote environmentally sustainable and climate-resilient development in 18 Latin American countries, particularly for the benefit of the most vulnerable populations. The Programme is implemented under the synergistic work of seven agencies: Spanish Agency for International Development Cooperation (AECID), French Development Agency (AFD), Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), Expertise France (EF), International and Ibero-American Foundation for Administration and Public Policies (FIIAPP), the German society for international cooperation (GIZ), and UN Environment.


For more information about EUROCLIMA+, contact Alexandra Cortés: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

For information about the EUROCLIMA+ Risk Management component, write to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.