Nataly Velásquez Rodríguez
365 days away from the Barranquilla Climaton!
By Nataly Velasquez, @seaphiagroup
Translated to English by Carlos Andrés Caviedes
Exactly one year ago, Seaphia had the pleasure of being the main organizer at the first and only Climathon held to date in the city of Barranquilla, Atlántico at the Colombian Caribbean, together with our friends from Blue21, from the Netherlands, SENA, and the Hydrosphere Foundation. One year later, we are pleased to share the main achievements, lessons, and perspectives that the Climathon left us.
“The Climathon is a global event happening in 56 cities around the world simultaneously! It is a meeting space for entrepreneurs, students, large companies, small companies, NGOs, the city, and anyone interested in a greener future to devise solutions for a greener local economy.” https://climathon.climate-kic.org/
Cali, Bogotá, and Barranquilla were the participating cities last year. Seaphia, as the host entity, was in charge of coordinating, publicizing, and leading the different activities of the meeting in the so-called "Golden Gate". For 4 days, experts in different disciplines, universities, members of the national and international private and public sectors, dedicated themselves to discussing, getting to know, and generating knowledge, alliances and initiatives focused on sustainable solutions to the use of the city's water bodies and the Atlantic: rivers, ocean, and swamps.
The Climathon revolved around six specific challenges: navigability of the Magdalena River, sustainable tourism, blue energies, restoration of maritime ecosystems, recycling - solid waste collection, and a deep-water port.
The proposals put forward by the participants ranged from issues such as governance in the Cienaga de Mallorquín (Invemar) to the use of mobile applications to encourage and spread the practice of recycling in the region. The winning project, Floating panels for the Mallorquín Swamp by Teko Mallorquín, went directly to the national Climathon contest. The winners there competed in the world final.
In addition to the massive awareness of citizens and people related to the participating entities of the importance and multilateral attention that the water bodies of the Colombian Caribbean require, agreements, strategies, and contracts have been fostered between relevant actors to improve the aquatic ecosystem and its uses, with a view to achieving a higher standard of living for the surrounding populations. An example is the country's active role in global initiatives such as the World Conference on Maritime Space Planning - MSP2030 of UNESCO and the European Union. It has been linked at the local level with the advances made by the national authorities in the typification of industries, organization, and development of Coastal Zones.
The support of Activist magazine was fundamental to the success of the event. In its Article about it, you can find specific details of the attendees and exponents of the Climathon Barranquilla 2020.
Seaphia is committed to achieving the objectives pursued in the Climathon, and together with Blue21, is currently working on the preparatory stage of the Blue Makerspace Project, which will be the first floating Blue Economy Hub, a meeting point for startups, investors, and civil society, for the creation of technologies and enterprises that position Colombia as a beacon in Latin America in this matter.
Those who are interested in knowing more about it and participating as promoters of this pioneering development in the continent can write to us at