Data on drugs and drug policies in Colombia

Alternative Development and Association with Eradication and Law Enforcement

(Alternative Development and Association with Eradication and Law Enforcement) "In Colombia, the government has sought to counter coca growth by building a solid regional and local economic base for agriculture, agro-industry, and forestry work. In addition, Colombia is currently developing a land tenure policy for traditional coca-growing areas to help solidify local support for licit alternatives to coca.15 For decades, alternative development has been a cornerstone of the international response to the illicit drug trade.

Environmental Impact of Illicit Drug Production and Eradication

(Environmental Impact of Illicit Drug Production and Eradication) "Plant-based drugs are often grown in ecologically valuable forest areas, with immediate and devastating consequences for the environment: deforestation, degradation of the soil, and pollution. Many traditional economic activities—such as agriculture, mining, and cattle ranching—have a negative impact on natural ecosystems, in part because they tend to replace native forests with croplands. The data provided below are, consequently, valid for both licit and illicit activities.

Colombian Deforestation

(Colombian Deforestation) "In Colombia, it is estimated that more than one million hectares of native forest have been eliminated as a result of illicit crops, and that for each hectare of coca, four hectares of forest are cut down, almost always by the slash-and-burn method. This deforestation, in turn, causes soil erosion."

Growth of 'Bandas Criminales' (BACRIMs) in Colombia

(Growth of 'Bandas Criminales' (BACRIMs) in Colombia) "Colombia continues to see a rise in criminal organizations known as 'bandas criminales' or BACRIMs, which have become a major law enforcement challenge. These groups include members of former paramilitary groups and are active throughout much of the country -- competing and sometimes cooperating with the FARC in the drug trade. For example, the largest BACRIM organization, 'los Rastrojos,' has traceable cooperative agreements with both the ELN and the FARC in southern Colombia.

US State Dept. Estimates of Colombian Drug Production

(US State Dept. Estimates of Colombian Drug Production) "Colombia is a major source country for cocaine, heroin and marijuana. However, the Government of Colombia continues to make significant progress in its fight against the production and trafficking of illicit drugs. Due to sustained aerial and manual eradication operations and aggressive enforcement activity, potential pure cocaine production declined eight percent, from 190 metric tons (MT) in 2011 to 175 MT in 2012, the most recent year for which figures are available.

Treatment Utilization

(Treatment Utilization) "In 2010, the government began drafting treatment regulations for drug addicts. However, these regulations are not yet finalized as the MSP continues to review how the Colombian health insurance system will cover drug addiction as a medical condition. Drug treatment services in Colombia are provided primarily by private organizations. According to the national consumption study, there are nearly 300,000 people with drug dependency problems needing treatment, and only 20,000 available spaces in facilities.

Personal Use Limits

(Personal Use Limits) "In December 2009, the GOC approved a law that prohibited the possession and consumption of small, "personal," amounts of illegal drugs. However, in August 2011, the Colombian Supreme Court overturned this law, finding that Legislative Act No.

Substance Abuse Treatment Policy Coordination

(Substance Abuse Treatment Policy Coordination) "The Ministry of Social Protection is the agency responsible for designing and executing public policy on treatment of drug abuse problems, for monitoring and regulating the supply of treatment, and for human resource training. The departmental health institutes are responsible for monitoring and regulating the supply of treatment, supervising programs, and human resource training.
"The country does not provide data on public financing allocated for treatment activities.