Father and son displaced by Cana Brava Dam, Brazil

Inter-American Development Bank

The Inter–American Development Bank (IDB) is the largest regional multilateral development bank in Latin America. Over the past decade, the IDB has approved $69 billion in loans, and has been a major driver of regional infrastructure integration programs, such as Plan Puebla Panama in Mesoamerica and the Initiative for the Integration of Infrastructure in South America (IIRSA).

The IDB has also been a consistent funder of large dams. Among the Latin American projects it has financed are Chaglla, Yacyretá, Sobradinho, Salto Grande, Itaipú, El Cajón, Cana Brava, and Chixoy dams. The bank also financed studies for the Paraguay-Paraná hidrovia project.

The IDB’s environmental and social record is uneven, at best. The IDB began revising its policies on environment, energy, indigenous peoples, and its independent investigation mechanism in 2004. Despite well–heralded consultations with civil society groups, the bank is unwilling to take sufficient measures to even bring its policies up the level of those of the World Bank.

More information: 
  • Multilateral Development Banks' Project Pipelines: A quarterly report on dam projects to watch out for at the the African Development Bank, the Asian Development Bank, the European Investment Bank, the Inter-American Development Bank, the International Finance Corporation, and the World Bank