Page 38 - 2020 Sustainability Report - Gran Tierra Energy
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 Advancing Prior Consultation During the Pandemic
One of the most important mechanisms for mitigating potential Human Rights issues in Colombia is called Prior Consultation, a formal process to ensure that officially recognized ethnic groups are adequately informed and consulted about activities which could impact them and their fundamental rights. In 2020, GTE was the first oil and gas producer in Colombia to receive permission to reactivate
a Prior Consultation after all were halted due to COVID-19. To accomplish this, GTE relied on its strong relationships and trust with
the community, strict health protocols and coordination with the relevant institutions.
GTE and the Cabildo Tordua Kidua, from the Embera Chamí ethnic group, a small Indigenous community near Puerto Asís in Putumayo, had begun a Prior Consultation before it was paused due to the arrival
of COVID-19 in Colombia. To restart the process, GTE and the 28-member community agreed on rigorous health and spiritual protocols to protect all participants.
During the Prior Consultation, GTE learned what the community goals and vision for development were, and was able to address concerns about possible disruptions to
sacred burial grounds, medicinal gardens
and water sources. Working together, the parties designed environmental, social and cultural management measures to address potential issues. The parties also agreed on infrastructure, conservation and development projects that would benefit the community.
Industry and government authorities closely observed the process to determine long-term feasibility and best practices for future Prior Consultations.

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