Consultation with indigenous communities of the Zenú Ethnicity for the implementation of the VIM –8 3D Seismic Program

11 August 2015


As part of the assistance we provide to our customers, Antea Colombia S.A.S. has made two prior consultations with Zenú indigenous communities (Loma de Piedra and Providencia), located in the in the Department of Córdoba, near the Colombian Caribbean Coast.

The purpose of these prior consultations was to communicate and engage these communities in a 3D seismic exploration program. 

Following were the challenges during the process: 

-    To make two simultaneous and separate prior consultations as, due to past conflicts, the two communities to be consulted did not understand each other, within a new area for the work team of Antea Colombia S.A.S.

-    To perform the two prior consultations in parallel with two technical studies:

one requesting a resource use permit and the other corresponding to an Environmental Management Plan (EMP) for the seismic exploration program for a block of 23,500 hectares located in 36 territorial units (18 of Planeta Rica and 18 of Pueblo Nuevo), where the ethnic communities were located in 70% of the Block.

These began in February of 2014 and culminated in May of the same year, which was a record time to execute and reach such agreements, the success factors of same being: 

-    To identify and define the purposes of the prior consultation with the client and with the team, setting up comprehensive a planning that included the implementation of activities both of prior consultations as well as of other projects (the permits application and EMP). 

-    To ensure the field participation in the process of the representatives of the indigenous and non-indigenous communities, which ensured a good social climate during its execution.

-    The alignments of the whole team in terms of the objectives to be met, taking into consideration the particularities of each type of community where contractors and the client were involved.

Among the main achievements during the execution of the queries and technical studies are:

-    To strengthen our client’s relationship with the communities and authorities.

-    To contribute to improving the relationship between the two indigenous communities.

-    To perform the previous two queries simultaneously, in a successful manner and within a very short time.

-    To build the relationship between the consultant (Antea Colombia S.A.S.), the operator, communities, contractors and authorities. This leads to it REALLY being possible to achieve a common purpose, based on teamwork.

-    To contribute to the cultural consolidation of these ethnic communities (Loma de Piedra and Providencia), given that their culture and traditions have been taken over by decades, this being their first experience in previous consultations.

At present, Antea Colombia S.A.S. assistance is providing support and assistance in monitoring the compliance with the agreements made as a result of the consultation process.