The “Blue University” status attests that the university commits to the values of the “Blue Communities,” a concept that has emerged as a progressive approach to promote the principles of water justice. These communities prioritize the human right to water, protect water as a public resource, and promote sustainable water management.
As he received the certification in the presence of water activists and water defenders from around the world at the event in Popayan, Fr Elias Wolff, professor at the Pontifical University, and a member of the World Council of Churches (WCC) Ecumenical Water Network, said that the certification brings “great responsibility and commitment for our university to intensify its efforts to affirm water as a gift from God, a human right and a common good – the core principles of the Ecumenical Water Network.”
Wolff is also the co-founder of the Ecumenical Water Network Brazil.
Dinesh Suna, coordinator of the WCC Ecumenical Water Network, stressed that this is the first university in the Global South affirming the principles of Blue Communities. The Pontifical Catholic University of Paraná currently has about 39,000 students and 1,500 professors.
“I am so delighted to note that such large universities are joining the Blue Community and I look forward to more and more churches, institutions, and universities becoming Blue Communities,” added Suna.