By Marcelo Kawanami
Our trip around the main water resources in the globe and their current situation continues. Today we will explore Lake Tota in the beautiful Colombia, a country that is emerging as an economic power in Latin America. Lake Tota is the largest lake in Colombia and it is located in the department of Boyacá. A vital water source for the country, the lake is key to the tourism and also the ecosystem of the country. The iconic Lake Tota is the habitat for local wildlife, including several threatened or endangered bird species. Additionally, many cities surrounding the lake rely on this water resource for consumption and agriculture.
Nevertheless, the same agriculture that relies on the lake is also destroying it. The department of Boyacá, where the lake is located, is one of the main producers of onion in the region. The pesticides and fertilizers used in the cultivation of onions are strongly polluting the lake.
Many organizations are fighting for the lake’s protection, which recently gained global headlines but not for positive reasons. I attached a video from BBC talking about the lake.
One of the main organizations that is focused in the social-environmental balance of the lake is Fundación Montecito (http://www.fundacionmontecito.org/). I strongly recommend everyone to visit their website and check out their projects and actions.