Government and Local Initiatives Seek to Clean Up Lake Titicaca

(Photo: El Comercio)

Peru and Bolivia’s governments agreed to work together on initiatives to clean up Lake Titicaca, but sometimes government moves too slowly…

Peruvian scientist Marino Morikawa is an experienced environmental specialist who successfully cleaned up a wetland in Chancay years back. During the past years, he also dreamed up an ambitious scheme: to decontaminate part of Lake Titicaca in 6 months.

However, that wasn’t enough. Now, Marino Morikawa says his project can be done in 15 days, hence the name of the project: Reto 15-Titicaca. The project is a response to the dangerous levels of plancton and harmful bacteria which threaten the core of the lake’s biodiversity.

Peru and Bolivia’s governments recently agreed to work together to clean up Lake Titicaca.

The initiative was announced after the two countries’ presidents met in Lima at the beginning of September. However, La Republica reports that the project to create treatment plants will not be ready until at least August of 2018 on Peru’s end of the deal.

With national government projects moving slowly, Morikawa will present his project directly to the municipality of Puno for approval. He proposes to introduce filters to the lake that will return oxygen to the waters. In addition, an organic substance will be applied to the water to clear and clean it without damaging any of the natural flora or fauna. Both processes would be applied 3 times per day, according to Peru 21.

Of course, the government cooperation in the creation of cleaning plants between Bolivia and Peru is a necessary and positive step forward. Moriwaka’s project will only clean up 0.02% of the world’s highest navigable lake, with the possibility of continuation if effective. However, it shows how independent movements can complement longer-term government projects.

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Mike Dreckschmidt

Mike grew up and eventually attended university in Green Bay, Wisconsin. He graduated in Integrative Leadership Studies with an emphasis in Urban and Regional Planning and has been a part of planning projects in three different countries. Mike’s passion is reading; he devours both literature and nonfiction. His favorite author is Peru’s own Julio Ramón Ribeyro.