Decision Support System for the Magdalena Basin - SIMA

TNC unveils innovative modeling tool to help chart a sustainable path for Colombia’s largest basin.

Spanning a quarter of Colombia’s surface area, the Magdalena Basin is the social, environmental and economic heart of Colombia. Much like other great rivers in the world, the Magdalena’s vitality is now jeopardized by the sheer weight of the numerous demands place upon it. One of the most vexing challenges is to know the collective impact on a watershed of myriad decisions on hydropower, urban, agricultural and other forms of development.

On March 28, in Bogota, TNC and its partners launched the Decision Support System for the Magdalena Cauca Marco-basin, known as SIMA, an innovative, open access, scientific tool for modeling the trade-offs for tough development and conservation decisions in the river basin. Using SIMA, authorities and developers can, at an early planning stage, visualize what the cumulative impact of each of their projects will be on the basin. SIMA not only provides an early warning but also helps identify solutions and guide investments to the conservation of key ecosystems that are vital for water regulation, such as wetlands and savannas.

This initiative continues what began on December 2016 in Colombia, when TNC and public and private partners such as the Colombian Ministry of Environment, the national environmental licensing agency, the power generators association, among others, began a historic, collaborative partnership for transparent decision-making in the Magdalena Basin.


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