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Dispatches from Ecuador
by Peter Berg

Peter Berg first went to Bahia de Caraquez, Ecuador in February, 1999 to help create community awareness of ecological issues and participate in a celebration announcing the Ecological City Declaration. He has been a consultant on creating and ecological city since that time, visiting every year. Peter organized ecological projects that included, revegetation, recycling and composting, alternative energy, and education. Planet Drum currently maintains an apartment/office where volunteers help with various projects under the guidance of the Project manager and staffers.

On each visit Peter sent back Dispatches containing his observations,  progress reports, events, and even recipes. 

The Dispatches are listed by year with the most recent at the top.

Dispatches, 2010

Peter returned to Ecuador in November 2010 to initiate the Bioregional Sustainability Institute. He sent this essay about  his thoughts and activities. 

Dispatches, 2009

Peter returned to Ecuador in February 2009 to attend celebrations for the Tenth Anniversaryof Bahia's Eco-City Declaration. 

Dispatches, 2008

Peter visited Bahia in both March and October 2008. His Dispatches in March include Bahia's Eco-City Mandate 2008(English & Spanish) and a celebratory dinner with the landowners who worked with Planet Drum this year. Judy Goldhaft sent a series of Journal Entries describing her adventures in Bahia and as a Planet Drum revegetation volunteer. In August Peter investigated Ecuador's  new constitution and its innovations including its granting “Rights of Nature.” He also worked with the Bioregional Education classes and produced a document considering what Planet Drum's Bioregional Sustainability Institute might include.  

Dispatches, 2007

Peter made  trips to Bahia in March and September in 2007.In March he writes about the land that Planet Drum has purchased for a Bioregional Institute and setting up a meeting with the Amigos de la Eco-ciudad, a coalition of individuals and groups who are interested in the eco part of the eco-city. In September, two letters by Judy Goldhaft describe the happenings in Bahia, including a visit by the new  president of Ecuador. 

Dispatches, 2006

Peter returned to the Eco-City project in Ecuador in March and later in September, 2006. He sent dispatches to report on the project's progress as seen through his eyes.

Dispatches, 2005

Peter returned to the Eco-City project in Ecuador in early February, 2005. His first Dispatch arrived near the end of February. He sent four Dispatches during this year.

Ecuador Dispatches, 2004

Peter returned in early June, 2004, to the Eco-City project in Ecuador. He began sending dispatches soon after. The first Dispatch is the often-reprinted  essay Learning to Partner with a Life-Place.

Ecuador Dispatches, 2003

We started out the new year with one volunteer, Simon Winch, working on the Eco Ecuador Project. In early January Peter arrived, and about a week later Brian Teinert, who has been hired as chief of  operations for Planet Drum's projects, arrived to carry on the work. Peter was busy organizing the projects in Bahia and introducing Brian to everyone. In mid-January Peter sent a comprehensive dispatch which reviews Planet Drum's accomplishments and visions over the past five years in Ecuador. He returned to Ecuador in November and continued sending Dispatches. 

Guayaquil Green City 2003

Peter Berg gave a presentation in Ecuador (21 Feb, 2003). This talk represents the latest strategic thinking on creating sustainable bioregional activities.

Dispatches from Ecuador, 2002

Several volunteers have joined Peter back in Ecuador to continue the revegetation work amidst downpours and mud slides. These Dispatches include a Statement of Intent to revegetate eroded hillsides, and a Management Plan for Fanca Produce Composting. 

Dispatches from Ecuador, Aug/Sep 2001

Peter returned to Ecuador to continue the work on Eco City. He continued the tradition of sending back dispatches for his faithful readers on the web site.

Report on Bahia de Caraquez Hillside Erosion Suitable for Revegetation Using Plantings Without Physical Alterations of the Landscape

 An addenda to Berg's Dispatches

Dispatches from Ecuador, Jan/Feb 2001

Peter Berg returned to Ecuador in January and February, 2001, to continue work on the Revegetation project and to participate in the growing Eco-Ciudad movimiento in Bahia de Caraquez. These are his reports from the scene. The series of meetings that Peter describes is important because it represents the institutionalization of an ecological agenda that has developed over the past two years.

Peter also lays out numerous opportunities for individuals or groups to contribute either through volunteer work, or donation of materials and supplies, or monetary contributions to the success of this experiment in creating green cities.

Dispatches From September 2000

Planet Drum staffers Peter Berg and Judy Goldhaft returned to Bahia in early September 2000 for further work in various areas of urban sustainability. These dispatches tell the status of their efforts in the hillside revegetation, water supply, alternative energy and other projects.

Report From August 1999

In order to get a first hand view of the situation since the Eco-Gathering, Peter made a second visit to Bahia in August, 1999, accompanied by Judy Goldhaft, Planet Drum's Managing Director. They wanted to survey the positive activities that the Bahians had already started, what support they needed, and how their projects could be tied to large-scale infrastructure improvements. The resulting report by Peter Berg outlines the Planet Drum proposal.

Dispatches From February 1999

Peter Berg went to Ecuador in February, 1999 to attend the International Eco-Gathering and help the local ecologistas organize in the midst of natural disasters that have beset the Bahia de Caraquez region over the past two years. We anxiously awaited for these seven dispatches that Peter sent back over the two-week period. These reports from 1999 illuminate the genesis of this unique collaborative effort.