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Reports from the Bioregional Education Classes of the
Eco-Ecuador Project


Index to 2007 Reports

Ramon's Weekly Report #3

Advanced Bioregionalism Education
Winter Session 2007

October 17th & 19th  

The first day of classes this week we analyzed the different criteria of sustainability in Ecuador. We held a discussion about the importance of sustainability. Among the factors discussed were the following:

  • Economic benefits because of improved quality of life through the rational use of flora and fauna.

  • Sustainability gives us a vision for the future because it will conserve and increase the population of plants and animals in the forests and allow future generations to benefit from this.

  • All different types of habitants and portions of the population, with the help of public and private institutions can be involved, without geographic limitations.

  •   With a working plan of action for sustainability for the conservation of ecosystems, including nation and international cooperation, we can improve the lifestyles of the residents and have a healthy environment free of pollution.

  • Improved consciousness of the benefits that natural resources can bring.

On Friday, we headed to the Cerro Seco nature reserve to observe a variety of examples of local sustainability. We visited a chicken coop of naturally raised chickens. This is an example of a micro-business since it supplies employment to members of the Bellavista community.




 We saw several reforestation sites around the nature reserve and the greenhouse with native tree species waiting to be planted. We saw the process of making trails through the Dry Tropical Forest, which will allow visitors to see the variety of flora and fauna there. We also did a cleanup of the area, collecting lots of disposed plastic materials.







After all this, the group came to the general conclusion that for everything to be sustainable, everyone must become conscious of the importance of natural resources which can be economically viable and at the same time improve our lives. Without conservation there won't be any sustainable development.

Translated by Clay.



Ramon's Weekly Report #4

Advanced Bioregionalism Education
Winter Session 2007

October 24th & 26th

This class had a new theme: Pollution. Before starting, I asked the class what they knew about the idea of pollution. They described pollution as the presence of a foreign substance that damages the soil, air or water. We then split into three groups to discuss air pollution in more detail. We were joined by some of the Planet Drum volunteers who helped out in the groups. 

After meeting together each group had to read their respective topics and then make conclusions to present to the other groups. We reformed in one large group to discuss what everyone had read.

Lissette said that the air is full of vapors and CO2 which is harmful to everyone's health. Klever talked about two different types of pollution: natural and artificial or man-made pollution. Natural forms being volcanos, storms, and forest fires. And manmade pollution which is a result of vehicles and factories, for example. The students also talked about the problem of the ozone layer in the atmosphere being damaged by refrigerants and how it is now recovering. Mathew presented on the problem of acid rain.

At the end of class, all the students commented on how developed countries are the ones that are doing the most damage to the world's environment, and how the United States didn't even sign the Kyoto agreement. But then I mentioned that there are foundations from those countries that are working to improve the environment in developing nations like Planet Drum and that that is why we have this bioregional education class. At the end of class, Raisa said she would try and ride in her car less and ride her bike and walk more.

On Friday we did field work around the city of Bahia. We decided to call ourselves 'environmental detectives' because the work we were doing consisted of counting the buses driving around the city and finding other large sources of pollution.

Within the span of twenty minutes, four buses left to go on their bus routes. Each one was emitting a large amount of smoke. According to this calculation, twelve buses leave every hour and in a normal twelve-hour day of bus service that would be 144 round trips from Bahia to Kilometro 8 and Fanca.     

We also found other forms of pollution. At construction sites there was an excessive amount of noise and lots of dust being produced, which is damaging to people's respiratory systems. 





We concluded that the buses should be upgraded because the current buses emit too many contaminants. 





There was also an open house at the Javier Rodriguez School and four of the bioregionalistas presented on the bioregional classes.  












They received congratulations from the school authorities as well as the other visitors to the open house.


Translated by Clay.