We are a self-administred and independent citizens` organization made
up of people that are prepared to defend our right to live in a place free
of interventions which irreversibly damage our ecosystem and the balance
in our ways of life.
SN Power is a Norwegian company founded in 2002, which seeks to satisfy
the energy demand in emerging markets and obtain profits for its investors
by the means of hydroelectric projects in various locations in the world,
meanwhile declaring its intention to protect the environment and local
cultures. In their Annual Report 2006 they define themselves as a dynamic
and ambitious company which seeks growth, this commercial interest being
one of its explicit values.
According to this same document, and as its executives have declared,
SN Power aims to develop its most important project at the global level
in Chile, allowing the generation of 1000 MW. The company`s intention is
to install three hydroelectric plants in the Rivers Region, via their affiliate
executing hydroelectric company Trayenko S.A., which in turn is an affiliate
of the Gustavo Pavez group (vicepresident of the Security Bank), which
posess 20% of the shares. According to their calculations, this project
will deliver 500 MW and the majority of profits in the energy sector.
Specifically, these plants, which will start operating in 2012 and 2014,
will be located in the Pellaifa (75 MW) and Liquiñe (125 MW) sectors,
and in the municipality of Panguipulli, and at the Maqueo plant (300 MW)
in the municipality of Futrono.
Initially the company has obtained a provisional concession for two
years from the Superintendant of Electricity and Combustibles (SEC), to
evaluate the feasability of the project.
The company has also obtained the surface water rights of the
various rivers, currents and estuaries in the zone: the rivers Llancahue,
Quilalelfu, Reyehueico, Carranco, Riñintilelfu, Llizán and
Changlil, and the estuaries Aihue and Malihue.
Currently, SN Power is performing studies in order to capture and redirect
these water courses by means of subterranean tunnels, directed towards
electrical turbine generators and houses, which will transmit energy through
high tension towers intented for the the mining companies, which are also
The company declared that “all the rivers that will be intervened will
always maintain part of its water flow, which means that the rivers will
not dry out as a consequence of our projects. Nor ar we considering constructing
large reservoirs.” However, the reservoir will inundate several hectares,
and in the case of the Llancahue river, its water will be diverted to other
Given that there have been no studies done on the rivers nor has anyone
specified how they will calculate the ecological volumes, these declarations
do not have any validity, are ambiguous and do not gurantee anything. That
which is clear, in the case of the Llancahue river, is that they seek to
remove more than 60% of its natural capacity and divert it to another location
20 kilometers further down the mountain. This means that the river will
lose an important percentage of its water level and provoke an irreversible
deterioration to the ecosystem of the river, to the biodiversity in the
area and the landscpape which many tourists enjoy.
Additionally, the tunnels which the company aims to build in order to
redirect the water, will be as deep as 300 metres, have a diametre of 6
metres, a total length of 19 kilometres, and will be accomplised by detonating
This presents innumerable problems:
• The enormous quantity of debris and rock material produced by the
construction of the tunnels and aqueducts and the uncertain destination
that this rubble will finally reach. It is estimated that the total quantity
of debris will be about the same size as Mount Diuco (36 000 m³).
• The ravines and gullies will be filled with the material mentioned
above, which could provoke alluviums after any amount of prolonged rainfall,
which will present a serious risk to the people living downriver.
• The fact that there are two geological faults in the area where the
reservoir and plants are to be built, means a high risk of earth displacement
caused by the amount of destruction that the reservoirs and inundations
downriver will provoke.
In order to perform the studies, SN Power has to intervene in the area,
in the properties of mapuche communities as well as in private properties.
Until now the locals have manifested a general opposition and have denied
permission to the company to enter their property without a court order,
because this project implies an enormous impact on the environment and
the lives of the surrounding communities.
Impacts on the Mapuce Communities
• Violation of Indigenous Rights: According to international agreements
which the company has signed, these projects have been designed without
consulting nor informing the mapuche communities in the area. In this regard,
the Chilean State has predominated over the right of free determination
of the Mapuche people, by condoning the execution of these projects without
entering into dialogue with the communities beforehand.
• The development model which is being imposed by the Chilean State
and the foreign companies is one of a short term vision which benifits
economic growth for a privileged few due to the economic power they possess.
In Chile there is a history of megaprojects which have created problems
in Mapuche territories, and a large part of the natural wealth are in the
hands of economic groups which are committed to maintain a model of social
inequality, such as acquiring water rights, water which is seen in the
Mapuche worldview as for everyone and not just for a few.
• Spiritual Intervention: a violation of sacred spaces, without respecting
the religious significance for the communities. For example: intervention
in the mountain, with explosives and detonations (they estimate a total
of 19000 detonations), and creating large and deep tunnels. For the Mapuche,
the mountain is sacred, as are the water and the forest. It is evident
that neither the company nor the Chilean State has listened to the voice
of the Mapuche leaders, about the type of development that the communities
would like to establish and the legacy which they would like to leave the
future generations. In itself, this project will intervene in the Mapuche
cementaries, which are sacred sites where the spirits of their ancestors
• Territorial Intervention: it is well known that throughout history,
the Mapuche people have been stripped of their lands, leaving them each
time further marginalized and deep in the mountain ranges. This has been
recognized, and currently there is an Indigenous Law in Chile in order
to protect their territories and their right to live in their land in the
way in which they define themselves. A project such as that of SN Power
will radically alter that life in their territory, will destroy their natural
wealth, and without it the communities will have to migrate to the cities
in order to look for work and means of living. Eloquent studies describe
this phenomenon, and show that the urbanization of the mapuche has been
funest for their cultural survival as a people. Additionally, the posibilities
for finding work are precarious, their salaries are minimal and they often
do not have any other alternative other than living a degrading life in
the margins of the cities, losing their roots and community way of life,
which are what centrally maintains their culture.
• Loss of historical memory: The destruction of the environment will
bring with it the disintegration of the communities and the loss of important
traditions for the community life of the Mapuche people.
• Intervention in the quality of life: The vision of development of
the Mapuche people is based on a balance with nature, where human life
is a part of it and fulfills the function of protecting it. These projects
are an alteration in this balance.
• The communities value the acts of sustainable tourism which exist
in the area, as a source of income. They sell their traditional products
to the tourists which pass by them on the road. The intervention in the
area by projects such as those by SN Power will change the type of tourist
visiting the area, as those tourists that come to seek natural, quiet and
beautiful environments will no longer come, and tourism itself will be
reduced in the form that exists today.
• Those that live on the side of the road will be seriously damaged
as the projects aim to widen the current two-way road, which means that
they will be expelled from their property, with a very low indemnity.
October 28th, 2007?
UNAUTHORIZED ENTRANCE BY SN POWER IN MAPUCHE TERRITORY
The communities of the area mobilized to expel the technical workers
who usurped their territory.
Before the unauthorized entrance of contractors of SN Power in mapuche
territory, the communities of Carririñe, Liquiñe and Neltume
decided to take drastic measures, and they convened on Monday October 22nd
to expel the company technicians from their property which they had usurped,
demanding them to retract their persons and their equipment which they
had installed in order to drill the earth, in the course of 4 days. About
60 mapuche and non-mapuche people participated in the mobilization, whom
walked up the moutain slopes to the summits where the equipment and personnel
of the company were working.
In this act SN Power has infringed upon the most basic of ethical principals,
and its agreements and declarations to the United Nations. Additionally,
due to the absence of access roads, they had to transport the equipment
to these territories by helicopter, in a clandestine manner, and without
asking permission from any of the communities, whom are the rightful owners
of these territories.
In this context, the mapuche communities, the neighbours, local organizations
and sustainable tourism entrepreneurs which support the communities are
NOT PREPARED to enter into dialogue or negociate with the norwegian company
“WE DO NOT WANT HYDROELECTRIC PLANTS OF ANY KIND”, stated the mapuche
leader María Eugenia Calfuñanco, which representes the following
mapuche communities which were present at the mobilization:
• Ancestral Community Vicente Pitrillan, sector Carrirriñe
• Ancestral Community José Neculfilo, sector Carrirriñe.
• Ancestral Community Juan Painepe, sector Trafún
• Ancestral Community Cachìn Palitue, sector Carrirriñe
• Ancestral Community Juan Quintuman, sector Neltume
• Ancestral Community Valeriano Cayecun, sector Neltume
• Ancestral Community Pillando, sector Punahue.
• Ancestral Community Vicente Reinahuel, sector Trafún Chico
The mayor of Panguipulli also participated in the mobilization which
ended in the expulsion of SN Power`s contractors, who supports the cause
in the defense of the territories, and at the same time opposes any type
of project which negatively effects the sustainable development of the
As one of the lonkos (chiefs) of Carrirriñe expressed:
“WE DO NOT WANT THEM TO ROB US OF OUR RIVERS...WE ONLY WANT THEM TO
LEAVE, WITHOUT TROUBLE”.
Mesa Pellaifa Newen.
Sunday, November 25, 2007
MANIFESTO IN IMPORTANT NORWEGIAN NEWSPAPER AFTENPOSTEN
Today, November 25th, an insert was published in one of the most important
Norwegian Newspapers, Aftenposten. The information included in the insert
has the purpose of informing and alerting the Norwegian public about SN
Power`s interventions in our area, and the inauspicious consequences the
projects will bring.
The insert appears in page three of the newspaper Aftenposten today,
november 25th, which can be seen in the image below:
From all the places that we are found, with our feet planted firmly
on the ground, we strongly defend our culture and territory, thanks to
those that have made the publication of the manifesto possible. The published
text, translated to English, is the following:
Norwegian company SN Power threatens the Mapuche people in the South
SN Power, a Norwegian state subsidiary, intends to construct four hydroelectric
plants in territories inhabited by our original indigenous (Mapuche) communities
in the South of Chile, which threatens to destroy sacred spaces, deplete
important rivers and estuaries, and radically transform our traditional
form of life.
Since SN Power announced the project, the ancestral communities have
denounced that the company does not recognize international agreements
which the norwegian state has signed, such as Convention 169 of the ILO,
violating the right of informed consent of those projects with influence
their lives. They have not considered the collective and territorial rights
that have been recognized internationally. SN Power has acquired the rights
to water of sacred sources and traditional use of the mapuche families.
These projects are intended to be executed in a territory recently
declared a GLOBAL BIOSPHERE RESERVE by UNESCO, and their execution
will destroy the great biodiversity which exists there, and its traditional
uses by the mapuche communities in the provision of food sources and natural
medicines. In itself, these projects will intervene in the spirituality
and forces which maintain the natural balance of the territory and the
The territory in which SN Power intends to intervene has exceptional
landscap conditions, and together with the living culture of the mapuche
communities, form a great potential for the development of tourism and
the preservation of nature. That is why civil society sectors and small
tourism enterprises reject this project.
The affected communities have true capacities to undertake their own
development strategies, coherent with their worldvision and their harmonious
relation with the environment.
The Mapuche communities have a unique lifestyle, which is differentiated
in the context of modernity. Their interest is to defend their collective
rights as a people, which also means defending the rights of the Chilean
population, and protecting the invaluable natural and cultural patrimony.
The implementation of this project has already damaged the peaceful
coexistance of the social relations in the area, provoking conflicts of
unexpected consequences which will translate into divisions of the population.
That is why we invite the national and international public to reject
these types of projects, to propose initiatives of sustainable development,
respectful of Life, Nature and indigenous peoples, which do not irreversibly
transform life and nature.
Ancestral Community Carlos Antimilla, sector Coñaripe Bajo -
Ancestral Community Juan Antiqueo, sector Linoico
Ancestral Community Rayen Mapu, sector Chépica
Ancestral Community Pirren Mapu, sector Chépica Alto
Ancestral Community Vicente Pitrillan, sector Carrirriñe
Ancestral Community José Calfuluan, sector Culán
Ancestral Community Juan Catrilaf, sector Llancahue
Ancestral Community José Neculfilo, sector Carrirriñe.
Ancestral Community Juan Calfuñanco, sector Río Hueico
Ancestral Community Vicente Reinahuel, sector Trafún Chico
Ancestral Community Juan Painepe, sector Trafún
Ancestral Community Cachìn Palitue, sector Carrirriñe
Ancestral Community Juan Quintuman, sector Neltume
Ancestral Community Valeriano Cayecun, sector Neltume
Ancestral Community Pillando, sector Punahue.
Thursday November 29th, 2007
WERKEN PEDRO ANTIMILLA INVITED TO IMPORTANT SEMINAR IN NORWAY
With much joy and apreciation we received the news that one of the
members of the Mesa, the werken (messenger) Pedro Antimilla has been invited
to participate as a panelist in a seminar in Oslo, Norway, called by the
NGO FIVAS (Association for the International Studies of Water). This invitation
was made by Andrew Preston, representative of the NGO.
The seminar will take place on Tuesday, December 11th in Oslo, and
its objective is to present the report created by Miguel Utreras Imilqui
on the situation of the Mapuche communities which will be affected by the
hydroelectric projects that SN Power has planned for the municipality of
Panguipulli. This report especially focusses on aspects of territorial,
cultural, social and economic rights of the Mapuche people and their conflict
with SN Power`s subsidaries.
Those panalists invited to the seminar are:
• Miguel Utreras Imilmaqui, author of the report.
• Pedro Antimilla, of the Mesa Pellaifa Newen.
• Silvia Schönenberger, of the Observatory of the Rights of Indigenous
People in Temuco, Chile
• A representative of the LO (National Labour Centre of Norway)
• A representative of Norfund (Norwegian governmental institute, owner
of 50% of SN Power`s shares.
• A representative of SN Power.
The invitation of a representative of the Mesa has the purpose of making
known to the Norwegian public, interested organizations and Norwegian governmental
sectors that are designing policies in the areas of development and investments
in the energy sector, the position of the affected communities, persons
and groups, and to show evidence of which we have been experiencing that
the company SN Power has a lack of respect for territorial rights of the
mapuche people, and the non-complicance with Convention 169 of the ILO
and the Declaration of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.
This invitation arose from the visit that Miguel Utreras Imilmaqui
made to Coñaripe last May, when he interviewed members of the Comission
Newen Mapu (which are now members of the Mesa Pellaifa Newen), who offered
important information with respect to the interventions SN Power made in
The call to attend the seminar is open. The presence of NGOs such as
the Grupo Latinoamericano is expected, who have been following the case
and would like to write about this in the annual report Ayuda Popular Noruega,
which has been informed of the case and have manifested their disagreement
with its implications. The Norwegian government will be represented by
the Ministry of Foreign Relations, which is responsible for Norfund; and
the Ministry of Energy, which is responsible for Statkraft (owners of the
other 50% of SN Power). The seminar will also expect to be attended by
norwegian parliamentaries, members of the press and the general public.
The seminar will offer recommendations directed at the Norwegian State,
the Chilean State and SN Power, each according to their respective responsibilities.
These recommendations are made according to the international agreements
of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. Additionally, it will be asked of
the central directors of SN Power to respond to the diverse conflicts which
have been generated in the process, and about the attitude that the company
has decided to take towards the communities`demands.
It is important to note that the demands which will be made to SN Power
in Oslo, are the same as those which the communities of Coñaripe
and Liquiñe have been making for months to the company: THAT SN
POWER WITHDRAWS FROM PANGUIPULLI.
We believe that the opportunity this seminar will offer is a relevant
part of the process that we have all constructed in defense of our culture
and our Ñuke Mapu (Mother Earth). Until now we have taken important
steps in opposition to SN Power`s projects. Each community and each organization,
from their territory and limited resources, has informed the people of
the threats that the plants will imply to our lifestyles and environment.
We have managed to neutralize the manipulation, arrogance and lies of the
representatives of SN Power, showing that the majority of the people in
our area do not want their projects, which will bring poverty and deterioration
to its inhabitants.
We have reached a very important moment, and without a doubt the invitation
to Norway to inform the people there of the bad practices of SN Power and
their lack of respect for the international agreements, is very well received,
in order to alert the Norwegian public of the irrepairable damage that
SN Power`s project could generate in our communities and territory. It
is an important challenge to go to the same house of the invadors and tell
them that we will not allow them to enter into our territories.
This action will reinforce our communities, as other actions that have
been undertaken in past few days by the communities in Carririñe,
guided by the werken María Eugenia Calfuñanco, to express
with clarity the downright rejection of hydroelectric projects in the area.
Pedro Antimilla`s trip also symbolizes for us a beautiful and mysterious
coincidence in the path of our fight, which connects us to the newen and
our Ñuke Mapu, which are supporting us and sustaining us in our
cause, which is the most just cause that exists. This is why we are here,
and it is the purpose of the werken Pedro Antimilla`s trip to show mother
earth that we will defend her.
For this, we ask that all remain united and support Pedro´s trip
with good wishes, as he will go and defend the rights of all the communities,
of the mapuche and non-mapuche people in the area.
Friday December 14th 2007
HISTORICAL ACHIEVEMENT OF THE MAPUCHE COMMUNITIES OF COÑARIPE
AFTER THE JOY OF A TRIP FILLED WITH LEARNING AND ACHIEVEMENTS, AND
THE JOYFUL RETURN OF OUR WERKEN PEDRO ANTIMILLA, WE PRESENT THE FOLLOWING
SYNOPSIS OF THE ACTIVITIES WHICH TOOK PLACE IN OSLO, NORWAY.
By Miguel Utreras Imilmaqui
During his visit in Oslo, Norqay, the Werken (messenger) of the communities
in Coñaripe and member of the Mesa Pellaifa Newen, Pedro Antimilla,
attended a series of activities in which he declared that the Mapuche communities
are in oposition to the hydroelectric projects planned by SN Power. The
activities took place from December 10 th to 13th, 2007.
On December 10th, members of the Norwegian press held interviews concerning
the conflict. The newspaper Klassekampen interviewed the werken, expressing
the opinion of the organisations he represents, giving special attention
to the Collective Rights of the Mapuche People and the Mapuche Communities
of Panguipulli. This report can be found by clicking
here. We are preparing a translation in spanish.
On the same day, the werken visited the Norwegian NGO “Framtiden i
våre hender” (The Future in Our Hands). This NGO is dedicated to
monitoring the actions of Norwegian companies overseas and their central
focus is respecting human rights, sustainable development and the environment.
Norwatch, which is the news agency of the organisation, has closely followed
the conflicts between the Mapuche communities and SN power in Panguipulli.
Norwatch held an interview with werken Pedro Antimilla. The interview can
be read by clicking
Seminar and launch of the report: “New Conquistadors?” SN Power: hydroelectric
projects in Mapuche territory
On December 11th, the launching of the report was on the seminar agenda.
The organisation responsible for this initiative was FIVAS (Organisation
for the International Studies of Water), a Norwegian NGO which monitors
and studies the activities of Norwegian companies in the water sector.
The writer of the report is Miguel Utreras Imilmaqui, Mapuche, and expert
in Development and Indigenous Peoples.
The seminar was held in the centre of Oslo, in the buildings of FORUM,
a common space for diverse Norwegian nongovernmental organisations. There
the fundamental elements of this conflict, and the position and vision
of the different parties, were presented.
The seminar participants elaborated on the conflict from diverse perspectives.
The anthropologist Silvia Schönenberger of the Observatory of Indigenous
Rights in Temuco revealed the situation of the Mapuche People, in relation
to the Chilean legislation and international standards.
Miguel Utreras Imilmaqui presented the FIVAS report, and detailled
his conclusions and recommendations, which were directed at three institutions:
the Chilean State, the Norwegian State and the Norwegian company SN Power.
We are preparing the translation to Spanish.
Pedro Antimilla, werken of the communities in Coñaripe which
oppose the projects planned by SN Power, presented the vision for development
which the communities have, from an indigenous perspective, and the reasons
why they oppose the construction of the hydroelectric plants in Mapuche
Nils Huseby, Director of SN Power for Latin America and Chile, revealed
the process by which SN Power managed to obtain the Water Rights, together
with their affiliate Centinela (of the Chilean Gustavo Pavez), who created
the Hydroelectric company Trayenko S.A. Huseby referred to the Social Responsibility
standars to which the company conforms during the process of developping
its activities in Panguipulli. Huseby recognized the existence of conflicts
and valued the analysis, conclusions and recommendations of the report,
and insisted that the intention of the company was that of a due process
of dialogue, admitting that there was much to be improved and understanding
in order to create the appropriate conditions.
María Lundberg, Adjacent Professor of the Centre for Human Rights,
made a critical analysis of the report from a legal perspective, considering
the diverse Declarations and Conventions which relate to Indigenous Peoples
within the body of the United Nations.
Following these statements was a debate panel in which the members
of the seminar could ask questions and make comments. A large part of the
inquiries were directed at SN Power concerning the conflict with the indigenous
The majority of the members of the seminar were from governmental institutions,
NGOs, investigators and members of solidarity organisations (the Latin
American Group of Norway). Appropriately, under those members were representatives
of the Sami People, of the Sami Radio and Television, and the Latin American
Radio of Oslo.
The seminar allowed for the conflict between SN Power and the Mapuche
communities to be understood in more detail and for a discussion to be
opened based on the Collective Rights of Indigenous Peoples, and to draw
the attention of the state organisms, media and Norwegian organisations
which are interested in the topic.
After the seminar, the werken Pedro Antimilla was interviewed by the
National Sami Radio, the Latin America Radio of Oslo and by written media,
such as Development Today, an important Nordic magazine which covers Nordic
investments in the development sector.
Meeting with NORFUND
Norfund is an Investment Fund for Development. This Foundation is under
the control of the Ministry of Cooperation in Norway, and is the owner
of 50% of SN Power.
The werken Pedro Antimilla, the representative of the Observatory,
the Director of FIVAS, Andrew Preston, and Miguel Utreras, writer of the
report, met with three Norfund executives: Petter Vilsted, Bjørn
Arnestad and Marc Davis.
Norfund expressed its opinion of the report and evaluated it as a serious,
balanced and constructive document. Norfund explained in short its way
of working and the standards and regulations it requires of its investments,
mentioning especially the standard 7 of the IFC of the World Bank. Norfund
declared that they are aware of the conflict, that they trust that the
executives of SN Power will perform their activities within the existing
regulations, however recognize that they still need to improve and are
thankful for the opportunity to hear the opinion of the indigenous communities
directly from the werken.
Norfund made a proposal in order to reinitiate the dialogue with the
communities and declared that they were prepared to look for solutions
in order to facilitate the improvement of the conditions for a dialogue.
The representative of FIVAS stated that this proposal should be made
in written form, in order to clearly demonstrate this intention. At the
same time he mentioned the importance of constructing an atmosphere of
trust between the parties, although this trust has already been completely
The werken Pedro Antimilla reiterated the opposition that the communities
have against the construction of the hydroelectric plants in Mapuche territory
and emphasized that the communities are not interested in a dialogue which
is condicional to the execution of the projects and its preliminary studies,
which means the execution of the plans and does not consider the consent
of the those that have never been informed, nor consulted as is mandatory
by international standards. The werken also declared that even if the Chilean
State has not implemented these standards, the Mapuche people recognize
them and apply them because they form part of their collective rights.
The werken agreed that Norfund should make a written proposal, but emphasized
that his role as werken was to experess the position of the communities,
to whom he would present the document so that they will read it, study
it and decide to give a response.
Meeting with the Minister of External Affaires
On December 12th there was a meeting with the political adviser of
the Minister of Cooperation and Environment, Morten Wasstøl,in the
Ministry of External Affairs. A member of the latinamerican section of
the chancellery also participated in the meeting.
The adviser was thankful for the visit and made the position of the
Ministry clear, which is as a delegator to Norfund, which receives state
funds and corresponds to investments in the cooperation sector.
The adviser made clear that the Ministry is following the conflict
and considering it very seriously, made clear that his role is that of
instructing the companies in order to assure that existing regulations
are complied with. He also added that it is important that Norwegian companies
which perform activities in indigenous territories must seriously consider
the interests of the communities.
With respect to the conflict, he only maintained that they will be
following the case in the future, requesting information from Norfund about
the case and hope that both parties will achieve a good dialogue.
After this meeting, the Werken Pedro Intimilla and Miguel Utreras Imilmaqui
were interviewed by the national Sami television. This interview was transmitted
during the news of the National Norwegian News in Sami, on December 13th
at 17.10. During the interview, werken Antimilla continually reiterated
the position of the communities, and appealed to the Sami parliament to
support the position of the communities in compliance with their collective
The Sami television and radio have amply covered the case and Sami
representatives have expressed their interest in knowing more about the
conflict and their solidarity with the Mapuche people and the communities
in Panguipulli, which the Sami Parliament also did during the Ralco conflict
in the Alto Bío Bío.
The representative of the NSR party, Aili Keskitalo, ex president of
the Sami Parliament, declared that the Sami Parliament should support the
communities and their demands. The current president of the Sami Parliament,
Egil Olli, showed more reservations towards the case, because the case
concerns External Affairs, but also added that the Sami Parliament has
always been solidary with indigenous peoples.
Thursday December 20th 2007
HISTORIC DOCUMENT SIGNED IN OSLO
Below you will find the historic document directed at Pedro Antimilla
and María Eugenia Calfuñanco, werkens (messengers) of the
Coñaripe, Liquiñe and Carririñe communities, in which
the vice president executive of SN Power for Latin America, Nils
Huseby, commitied to suspend the company´s activities related to
its hydroelectric projects in Panguipulli, until a meeting at the end of
January will take place, to listen to the opinion of the ancestral communities
concerning its projects and finding the conditions for a possible dialogue.
As mentioned above, this document was signed in Oslo, during werken
Pedro Antimilla´s recent visit, as a representative of the communities,
in order to put the minimal standards which exist concerning indigenous
rights and consistent with those Norway respects for the Sami people, Convention
169 of the ILO (1990) and the Declaration of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples
(2007), into practice. In this meeting, Huseby recognized the errors which
were made by the executives of SN Power in acting with force and
without the consent of the communities.
We should stay alert to see if SN Power will definatively suspend its
Latin American activities and the flow of vehicals and fieldworkers pursuing
environmental and social impact studies.
Be alert to see if the company is capable of fulfilling these agreements.
The letter reads:
Mr. Pedro Antimilla,
Werken of the indigenous communities of Coñaripe and Liquiñe
and membre of the Mesa Pellaifa Newen, and
Mrs. María Eugenia Calfuñanco,
Werken of the communities of Carririñe
Oslo, December 12th, 2007
Dear Pedro and María Eugenia,
Thank you for a very constructive meeting at the offices of FIVAS in
Oslo. With this letter I would like to sincerely reiterate the desire and
commitment to meet with the representatives of the indigenous communities
which you represent in Carririñe, at an hour and date suggested
by you at the end of January 2008, in order to listen to your position
concerning our projects and establish the base for a possible dialogue.
I am hereby also confirming our commitment to maintain the current suspension
of activities related to our projects in the municipality of Panguipulli
until the said meeting has taken place.
Nils M. Huseby
Vicepresident Ejecutive for Latin America
Feb 4, 2008
The ancestral communities affected by the hydroelectric projects
in Panguipulli, after the meeting with executives of SN Power in Carirriñe
on January 31st, 2008, declare the following:
1. The meeting was the result of much effort made by many mapuche families
of our communities, which independently assisted the meeting to present
the rejection of the construction of hydroelectric plants by SN Power,
a company which offered to listen to our concerns and suspend the project
if they received opposition by the communities.
2. In this meeting 14 lonkos (chiefs) of the ancestral communities
were present, as well as more than 500 mapuches, which represent some 3000
people of our communities. Additionally, we were supported by the mayor,
the entire municipal council, tourism entrepreneurs, neighbours and non-mapuche
3. The meeting was very well organized by our communities, where we
clearly expressed our rejection of the projects and demonstrated that we
are not terrorists.
4. Although the provincial government had assured us that there would
not be a militarization of the zone, and that they would respect our own
security measures, police entered our land in vans, as well as the special
forces and various trucks were circulating the location.
5. Once again, we were victims of deceit by SN Power, who continues
to confuse us and violate our collective and ancestral rights according
to the international agreements which concern them.
6. In the end, the meeting generated a document true to all that was
said during the meeting by Nils Huseby, executive of SN power, and our
representatives. However, Huseby refused to sign this document, in the
presence of all, effectively repudiating the meeting he held with our communities.
The document was signed by the lonkos (chiefs) and the mayor of the municipality,
who has supported us in our rejection of the hydroelectric plants.
7. In violation of our rights, SN Power will continue with the
studies it plans on performing in the area, they will continue to attempt
to enter our territory without our consent, they will take advantage of
the ignorance and necesities of many families, they will buy our conciences
and our connection with the Ñuke Mapu (mother earth), they will
mortgage the natural and environmental wealth of our people, provoking
disagreements and conflicts within and between families.
8. The company is now acting in a discriminatory manner towards our
families, as the meeting on the 31st of January was politically manipulated,
as if our communities do not have their own free will, and they did not
want to accept that we do not want their project, because we know that
we stand to lose the little wealth that we have.
9. The company intends to rob us of our water, the mountains, the forests,
and we will not allow this to happen.
10. Our declaration and opposition is and will be peaceful, although
during the meeting someone expressed his pain by saying that he is prepared
to sacrifice his own blood in order to defend the ñuke mapu, the
opinion of one cannot be used to generalize our legitimate defense, as
the executives of the company had attempted by means of the press. It is
the company that has given birth to the violence, when they imposed a new
We hereby make an appeal to the public opinion to support our communities.
are protecting the Mapuche territory and our cultural, natural, and spiritual
patrimony of the world, in times that humanity should act in order to stop
the destruction of nature, as this company intends to do.
We also hereby make an appeal to the Chilean State to respect our ancestral
rights over our territories and resources, who continues to see us as a
flock of sheep which can be herded in any direction it pleases, and once
and for all we are looking for serious alternative pathways to economic
development, for our communities and our country. We know that the energy
crisis is not our responsibility and we should not have to pay the costs
for an unsustainable model. Which world will we leave our grandchildren,
if we continue in this disturbing track to destroying our ñuke mapu?
The company has declared that it will continue working even though the
communities oppose. They will continue their studies, even though the project
is unviable, culturally and socially speaking. We do not want a conflict
that will generate devastating consequences. The company is only persuing
an economic end, they do not respect our people, they are not interested
in our existence, the only thing that matters for them is the money. This
is what was made very clear in Carirriñe.
Finally, we reject SN Power and make an appeal to the Norwegian public,
to the Sami people, to observe how this company is acting as one of the
worst colonizers, making our mapuche people suffer once again.
Ancestral Community José Calfuluán
Ancestral Community Juan Antiqueo
Ancestral Community Vicente Piutrillan
Ancestral Community José Neculfilo
Ancestral Community Vicente Reinahual
Ancestral Community Juan Painepe
Ancestral Community Juan Calfuñanco
Ancestral Community Cachim Palituhue
Ancestral Community Juan Quintuman
Ancestral Community Valeriano Cayicul
Ancestral Community Carlos Antimilla