LAC Occasional Paper Series

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The LCSSD Occasional Paper Series is a publication of the Sustainable Development Department (LCSSD) in the World Bank’s Latin America and the Caribbean Region. The papers in this series are the result of economic and technical research conducted by members of the LCSSD community. The series addresses issues that are relevant to the region’s environmental and social sustainability; water, urban, energy and transport sector development; agriculture, forestry and rural development; as well as cross-cutting topics related to sustainable development such as climate change; logistics; crime and violence; and spatial economics. While all papers in this series are peer reviewed and cleared by the LCSSD Economics Unit on behalf of the Director of LCSSD, the findings, interpretations, and conclusions expressed in this paper, as in all publications of the LCSSD Occasional Paper Series, are entirely those of the authors and should not be attributed in any manner to the World Bank, to its affiliated organizations or to members of its Board of Executive Directors or the countries they represent. The World Bank does not garantee the accuracy of the data included in this paper and accepts no responsibility for any consequences of their use.

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Environmental Health Costs in Colombia : The Changes from 2002 to 2010

2014-06, Golub, Elena, Klytchnikova, Irina, Sanchez-Martinez, Gerardo, Belausteguigoitia, Juan Carlos

Despite considerable progress in the area of environmental management over the last decade, Colombia still faces significant impacts from population exposure to urban air pollution, inadequate access to water supply and sanitation, and indoor air pollution from solid fuel use. This study estimates that the total health cost attributable to these three factors amounts to about 10.2 trillion Colombian Pesos (COP) annually, or about 2 percent of GDP in 2010. In terms of mortality, about 7,600 annual premature deaths can be attributed to these environmental factors. This study updates some of the estimates of environmental health costs reported in the 2005 Colombia Country Environmental Analysis environmental priorities and poverty reduction . Specific policy recommendations and targeted interventions can be derived from future analysis of environmental health costs at subnational level, cost-benefit analysis of specific policy interventions, and an analysis of the burden of health costs disaggregated by population groups and poverty levels. Disaggregated statistics on health outcomes, fuel use, and access to infrastructure services, epidemiological studies, and air quality models (urban and industrial areas) are required for such analysis. Disaggregated assessments and cost benefit analysis, recommended for future studies, will facilitate an evaluation of policy and investment outcomes in terms of their impacts on the most vulnerable groups and the extent to which they are well targeted and benefit the poor.

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Restoring the Coastal Environment in Cartagena, Colombia

2014, World Bank

Cartagena, the historic city where the '1983 Cartagena convention for the Protection of the Caribbean' was signed, is meeting its responsibilities to protect the public health of its citizens as well as the costal marine environment through improved wastewater management. Cartagena's experience can serve as an inspiration to the wider Caribbean region and provide a model for other developing coastal cities. Water pollution control is a key issue for the world's coastal cities. Pollution emanating from domestic and industrial wastewater can not only contaminate the ocean environment but also damage highly productive estuaries and bays that provide a critical ecological connection to the marine environment. Inadequate wastewater management can also pollute urban beaches, potentially threatening public health and undermining tourism. This technical note summarizes Cartagena's experience in wastewater management for international dissemination and was jointly prepared by the World Bank, the Colombian Ministry of Environment and Sustainable Development, the Cartagena water utility (ACUACAR), and the Global Partnership for the Oceans (GPO).

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Implications of the Organization of the Commodity Production and Processing Industry : The Soybean Chain in Argentina

2010-01, Regunaga, Marcelo

The study includes four sections: i) brief production background; ii) description of the Argentine soybean value chain; iii) evolution of the main policies and institutional regimes in Argentina; iv) lessons learned related to the political economy and the industrial organization. The study describes the main policies implemented in Argentina during the last two decades which had impact on the structure of the soybean value chain and its performance. The dramatic changes registered in some of such policies, as well as in the international scenario, provide interesting background to better understand the evolution and performance of the Argentine industry in the global soybean value chain.

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Framework for Conducting Benefit-Cost Analyses of Investments in Hydro-Meteorological Systems

2014-06, Malik, Arun S., Amacher, Gregory S., Russ, Jason, Esikuri, Enos E., Ashida Tao, Keiko

The whitepaper is organized as follows: section two provides an overview of the types of benefits associated with hydromet investments, the process by which the benefits are generated, and their expected development impacts; section three explains the rationale for public sector investment in hydromet systems and involvement by the World Bank; section four discusses the wide range of factors that influence the magnitude of benefits generated by hydromet systems, in particular the value of weather and climate forecasts. The discussion is supplemented by a stylized example presented in annex one; section five provides an overview of approaches that have been used to estimate the value of improved forecasts of routine climate to specific user groups or sectors of an economy; section six then turns to an overview of approaches that have been used to estimate the net benefits of hydromet investments at the country level. The primary benefits estimated by these approaches are those associated with improved forecasts of extreme meteorological events; section seven contains a discussion of the costs of hydromet investments, with particular attention given to the challenges faced in estimating these costs in developing countries; section eight lays out a framework for estimating the expected net benefits of hydromet investments at a country level. The framework builds on existing approaches and is designed to be used with data available from secondary sources. This section will be of central interest to those tasked with conducting economic evaluations of hydromet investments; section nine describes data that can be collected to conduct interim and ex-post evaluations of hydromet investments that supplement and refine ex-ante evaluations of these investments; and section ten offers conclusions and recommendations.

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Inclusive Green Growth in Latin America and the Caribbean

2013-01, World Bank

Argentina has expanded the use of its portion of the Parana-Paraguay waterways system for the transportation of soy and other bulk commodities through an innovative tolling system that self-finances the dredging and maintenance of the rivers. Brazil, in turn, is pursuing a 'green trucking' strategy to improve efficiency of its cargo haulage industry, reduce petroleum usage, and curb pollution from trucking. For the entire hemisphere, the expansion of the Panama Canal will bring post-Panama vessels and introduce greater scale economies in shipping. The following sections of this paper provide a more detailed review of the sectoral objectives, challenges, and way forward in making Latin America and Caribbean (LAC) growth greener and more inclusive. It looks back over the achievements of the demand sectors of urban development and infrastructure services, energy, urban transport, and water and sanitation, as well as natural resources and rural development since Rio 1992. It highlights the achievements in those areas, and the ability of those accomplishments to establish a robust path for the region to inclusive green growth.

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Developing a Program for Contaminated Site Management in Low and Middle Income Countries

2014-05, Kovalick, Walter W., Jr., Montgomery, Robert H.

Contaminated sites associated with economic growth and development and increased urbanization pose a growing public health and environmental problem. Emissions and discharges, particularly uncontrolled ones, onto land can pollute the soil and the groundwater beneath, and can also affect surface water quality and sediments in nearby rivers and streams. This document is intended to summarize the rationale and the major policy, regulatory, implementation, and organizational issues involved in creating a contaminated site program, especially for low and middle income countries. The document offers alternatives regarding the design and implementation of such a program. It provides an action agenda of short- and longer-term activities to be considered when establishing a contaminated site program. In addition to providing some optional approaches for the many policy and programmatic issues, the document provides numerous references from the experience of other country programs to draw upon in considering program options. The document is intended to help support World Bank staff or other international financial institutions and assistance agencies in their dialogues with governmental officials in low and middle income countries regarding specific options and steps on developing or implementing contaminated sites programs in their countries. It is also relevant for governmental agencies in these countries responsible for site contamination and pollution management, land use planning, and site development at local and national levels. The document is organized in the following chapters: chapter one gives introduction. Chapter two is setting policy and legislative framework which highlights the development of policy and legislative purpose, principles, strategy and design, and related legislation. Chapter three is regulatory issues which presents major topics that may be the subject of regulations by a ministry or agency. Chapter four is contaminated site program management which presents management, organizational, and operational issues, including issues of coordination and partnerships within branches of government and with other stakeholders. Chapter five is action agenda for contaminated site program which provides the development of an action agenda of short- and longer-term actions to be considered in forming a contaminated site program, including creation of a national management plan for contaminated sites.

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Gender Dynamics and Climate Change in Rural Bolivia

2011-11, Ashwill, Maximillian, Blomqvist, Morten, Salinas, Silvia, Ugaz-Simonsen, Kira

The purpose of this report is to inform practitioners on gender dynamics in Bolivia as they relate to natural resource management and climate change. This is done to provide new knowledge for mainstreaming gender into rural development projects. The aim is to go beyond general gender assumptions and provide more detailed empirical knowledge on differentiated gender roles and the relative access of women and men to resources. The report will demonstrate that women and men in rural Bolivia have many different roles and opportunities, which are not equally distributed. The paper will also show that these roles are changing as a result of both general development trends and climate change. Further, evidence demonstrates that women and men experience vulnerability and adapt to climate change differently. As a result, rural development and adaptation strategies should integrate the relative capacities of women and men and respond to their particular needs. This will help avoid counterproductive out comes that widen gender gaps and allow for more sustainable, pro-poor rural development. This report will begin by introducing the methodology and case study regions. It will then examine in detail the specific roles of women and men in rural Bolivia. Next it will look at the gendered access to and control over resources and how gender roles, access and control are changing as a result of climate change. The report will finish with some general conclusions and specific recommendations for development practitioners in rural Bolivia.