Clean Water for Mesoamerica

Corals, communities, and coastlines in Mesoamerica are suffering the effects of failed and inadequate wastewater treatment. ELAW has been working with partners in Mexico to protect water quality and is now expanding across the region, to clean up water supplies and hold polluters accountable.

“Clean water is a fundamental human right,” says ELAW Attorney Alejandra Serrano. Coastal communities in Mexico’s Yucatan and beyond rely on freshwater aquifers. When these water bodies are contaminated by human waste, it’s a public health crisis and a crisis for the Mesoamerican Reef, which supports livelihoods across the region.

ELAW works with Centinelas del Agua, Healthy Reefs for Healthy People, and Centro Mexicano de Derecho Ambiental (Mexican Center for Environmental Law, CEMDA) to protect coral reefs from contamination and advance UN initiatives to codify and defend the human right to water and sanitation.

In Mexico, we have helped our partners educate citizens about proposed laws and regulations that would strengthen protection for water and the human right to clean water.

Today, we are building on our work across the Mesoamerican Reef region, as ELAW joins citizens, organizations, and technical experts to promote the Agua, Nuestro Derecho (Water, Our Right) campaign. Together, we are amplifying citizen voices to protect the human right to water and sanitation. Our partners in Honduras, Belize, and Guatemala are leading the effort in their countries.

Our first step is to spread the word about existing legal tools and opportunities to advance human rights to water and sanitation in Mesoamerica. We will create spaces for dialogue and build local strategies to protect water for sustainable communities and coastal ecosystems.

Follow Agua Nuestro Derecho to learn more.

Maggie Keenan
Communications Director
Environmental Law Alliance Worldwide