NCT América del Sur 2024 Takes Place in Bogotá, Colombia


By NCT Consultants

Bogotá, Colombia, February 6-8, 2024 – The sixth edition of the only CBRNe conference, exhibition, and trainings series in South America has taken place in the Colombian capital city of Bogotá.

South America is far from immune to CBRNe threats. With painful memories of war and narcoterrorism, and a present day blighted by crime, tropical diseases, and landmines, countries across South America are investing in their preparedness against non-conventional threats. Indeed, only on January 29, 2024, a truck carrying hazardous chemicals crashed in Joinville, Brazil, causing sulfonic acid to leak into a river and triggering a local state of emergency.

Welcoming 379 delegates from countries across South America, the United States, and Europe, NCT América del Sur 2024 took place at Club Militar from February 6-8, 2024, in association with the School of Military Engineers of the National Army of Colombia. The event was gold-sponsored by Heyl Pharmaceuticals and silver-sponsored by SERB Pharmaceuticals.

The conference opened on February 7 with the Colombian national anthem, followed by an address by the Commander of Military Engineers of the Colombian Army, Brigadier General Ricardo Heriberto Roque Salcedo. The opening plenary also saw contributions from the President of the CBRNe Society, Anna Paternnosto, and the Director of NCT Consultants, Ilja Bonsen. The conference was chaired by the Director of CINQUI, José Sea Agüero, from Peru.

The opening plenary also saw an address from the Deputy Director of the Exercises and Coalition Affairs Directorate of USSOUTHCOM, Brigadier General Nestor Enrique Caro Gutierrez, and Lieutenant Colonel Carlos Alberto Castrillón Mora, of the Colombian Army’s main CBRN response brigade, BRIAD.

Following the opening plenary, NCT América del Sur 2024 was very honoured to be joined by the Vice Minister of Strategy and Planning, Mr. Luis Edmundo Suárez Soto.

Day one also saw the traditional NCT Tech Tour in which exhibiting companies presented their latest innovations and products to the several hundred conference delegates in attendance.

Conference session one on “Civil and Military Perspectives on Managing CBRN Events” welcomed presentations from First Sergeant Hector Palacio (National Army of Colombia), Mr. Juan Parra (Coordinator of Nuclear Affairs, Ministry of Mines and Energy), and Major Edmundo Mora (President, Technical Group of Chemical and Biological Weapons, Army of Ecuador).

Conference session two on “CBRN in a Changing World” welcomed contributions Sergeant Omar Mendoza (HAZMAT Group, Bogotá Fire Department), Dr. Brigith Sierra (University of Applied and Environmental Sciences, Bogotá), and Dr. Jean-Baptiste Balen (SERB Pharmaceuticals, France).

Day two of the conference on February 8 opened with the anthem of the National Army of Colombia, and an address by Colonel Yohanny Quijano Zanguña, Commander of the Brigade of Engineers for the Attention and Prevention of Disasters, National Army of Colombia.

Session three of the conference focused on “Combatting CBRN Crime”, and welcomed presentations from Major José Cabrera (CBRN Expert, National Police of Colombia), a joint presentation from Captain Carlos Niño and Major Edwin Guevara (National Army of Colombia), and Leonnel Guerrieri (Regional Explosives Focal Point for South America, INTERPOL).

Session four was dedicated to the problem of landmines and explosive remnants of war in South America. The conference was addressed by Lieutenant Colonel (ret.) Alejandro Perez Alvarez (Director of the Colombian Campaign Against Landmines and former Chilean Army), Lukasz Olenderek (Director of Operations at The HALO Trust in Colombia), and Major Miguel Plazas (Director of Innovation and Development Against Explosive Devices, CENAM, National Army of Colombia).

The final session on “International Trainings and Exercises” saw contributions from Colonel Alexandre Carvalho de Vasconcelos (Ministry of Defense, Brazil), Mr. Geovanni Bozo (Deputy Commissioner in the Specialized CBRN Brigade of the Police of Investigations of Chile), and Mr. Alexis Gartner (Defense Threat Reduction Agency’s Representative to USSOUTHCOM, United States).

PRO Trainings

The unparalleled success of the NCT PRO Trainings series continued at NCT America del Sur 2024 as six teams specializing in CBRNe threats trained on the latest technologies provided by four companies: Scanna, Metrohm, Airsense Analytics, and Heyl Pharmaceuticals.

The six participating training teams included two from the Bogotá Fire Department, one from the National Police of Colombia, one from BRIAD (Colombia), one from CENAM (Colombia), and one from the Manta Fire Department (Ecuador).

Closing and NCT América del Sur 2025

The conference, exhibition, and PRO Trainings closed in the afternoon of February 8 with the PRO Trainings certificates ceremony, and was followed by addresses from Brigadier General Roque Salcedo, Anna Paternnosto, Ilja Bonsen, and José Agüero.

It was also announced that NCT América del Sur 2025 will be taking place in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The CBRNe Society and NCT Consultants look forward to welcoming you to this and other events in the future.

NCT Consultants  

The NCT events and trainings are organized by NCT Consultants, a defense and security company with 12 years of international experience, based in Leiden, The Netherlands. The company contributes to warfighters’ and first responders’ missions and capabilities to counter the threats of weapons of mass destruction and mitigate their effects. NCT Consultants connects businesses, governments, and NGOs by providing knowledge and networking, training, and assisting in building global partner capacities and partnerships.  

The flagship activities of NCT Consultants are the NCT annual events in Europe, the USA, South America, the Asia Pacific region, and the Middle East. Built on strong cooperation with government partners, the regional NCT events are the leading CBRNE, C-IED, EOD, and demining event series in the world with around 250-400 participants per edition.  

NCT Consultants is present in three continents with companies based in The Netherlands, USA and Singapore. 

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