Bogota’s Climathon: Innovative solutions to extreme weather events

The Climate-KIC Climathon is a global 24-hour climate change event which will take place simultaneously in major cities around the world on 28 October 2016. 

In Bogota, the Climate-KIC Climathon will begin on the 28 October COT and finish on the following day. It is organised by Foundation People and Earth Institute and aims to reduce extreme events of climate variability, and their effects, in Bogota.

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The Challenge

In the past century, the city of Bogotá has been, and will continue to be, highly affected by the effects of climate change, especially by the presence of increasingly intense and frequent extreme weather events. The latest manifestation of the El Niño phenomenon took place during 2015, and the first semester of 2016. El Niño ENSO left massive impacts in productive sectors and in the local economy, especially in the agriculture, energy and drinking water sectors.

Due to the affectation in the Chingaza Páramo ecosystem that provides drinking water to Bogotá and keeps the reservoirs of the rest of the region, the prices of portable water and energy services reached levels never before imagined. Further, in this climate event, the city exceeded the maximum limit of air pollutant concentration, increasing respiratory diseases in the population, especially in January, February and March 2016 which are dry periods. La Niña 2010-2011 and La Niña 2011- 2012 caused the greatest floods events ever in the most important rivers and watersheds of the city, and affectations due to the landslides in the major vulnerable communities from Bogota. Another big impact was the blockage of the sewerage system and affectations of the road system in the city.

Therefore, to continue with our current lifestyle we must be aware of this big problem and start with our own strategy to mitigate the Green House Gas emissions (GHG) and adequately adapt the current economic and domestic activities to reduce exposure and face the increased intensity and frequency of these extreme climatic events. The effects and risks remain in homes, roads, crops and goods, and on strategic ecosystems and in the local, regional and national economy scale that remains highly vulnerable, especially in the economic sectors as the agricultural, housing, health, education and finance sectors.

Pitching to expert judges

The Climathon event will culminate in presentation of each group’s idea in front of panel members who will provide valuable feedback. The panel is comprised of different science and business experts.

Partners

Foundation People

Earth Institute

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