"The Revenge of the Mancha Blanca"; 05.01.03
"Earlier," recounts Nicola Mears, "earlier, here stood mangroves as far as the eye can reach. Thousands of families lived on the rich fishgrounds of the mangroves." Until about twenty years ago the shrimp boom set in, promising quick money to a few. On the way to the Bahía organic farm we cast a look on the bank of the Río Chone. The scenery is dominated by gigantic industrial shrimp farms. The ponds surrounded by brown dams without vegetation run for many kilometres along the coastline.
Abingdoni, 90 years old, 100 kilograms, looks for a female partner for preservation of species, 04.12.02
George eats gleefully his everyday portion of grass. The strong jaws grind without effort leaves and young sprouts. With his massive body, he shields the delicacies from two females. George is not very interested in his female company. Other tortoises would eke out a scanty living as loners. In the case of George, the scientists do not regret any effort in order to find a partner for this giant tortoise. As the case is, George is the last one of his species.
Volcanic Eruption Puts Pipeline in Danger; 15.11.02
On 06 November, 2002 the 3,562 metres high Reventador volcano erupted quite unexpectedly. The route of the new OCP pipeline runs only a few kilometres in the South along the foot of the active volcano. Hundreds of workers of the Argentinian Techint construction company had to be evacuated when the falling stones and lava lumps put the construction camp in danger. The OCP pipeline was damaged by he eruptions at several points.
"But do vampires exist?"; 17.11.02
"There are bats that attack people and suck their blood," says the 13-year-old Luis and looks expectantly at the German biologist Felix Matt. The Swabian smiles and explains again to the eight children of the environmental project patiently that these stories belong to the world of myths.
Forestation Project at the Edge of the National Park; 14.11.02
Ecuador has the highest deforestation rate worldwide. Over 75 per cent forests have been lost so far and at current pace, dry forests and tropical mountain and primeval forests will have almost disappeared in about 20 years.
In the footsteps of Oil Companies; 11.11.02
At a reality tour of the American organization Global-Exchange interested young people want to go beyond the scope of the mass-media and talk with the people on the spot about the problems of oil extraction. In two days from Lago Agrio to Limoncocha the journey proved to deserve its name...
The price of the Black Gold; 07.11.02
From 1964 to 1992 Texaco extracted oil in Northern Amazonas region with obsolete technology. Toxic residues and oil were not disposed in an environmentally friendly way for cost reasons, but brought to the fragile eco-system. Even ten years later people suffer from the contaminated soil. For nine years, those affected have been filing actions against the oil giant...
"David against Goliath"; 24.10.02
OCP plans a construction of the pipeline on the steep mountain ridges of the Mindo protection forest. "Acción por la Vida", an organization founded in Mindo fights desperately against the construction project. Cesar Fiallo does not believe in the stability of the pipeline: "Just imagine that the pipeline constructed up there will be damaged in a landslide. The leaking oil would irrecoverably devastate the wildlife on both sides of the mountain."
A nursery of the sub-aquatic fauna
Along with coral reefs and tropical rain forests, the mangrove forests belong to the most productive ecosystems of the Earth. Many fish and crab species use the mangroves for reproduction. Although the significance of the mangroves for the overall marine eco-system has been recognised, these sensitive coastal regions have been devastated because of the exploitation of resources and agriculture.
Industrial shrimp farming - plundering of nature?
Ecuador is one of the biggest shrimp exporters in the world. In the rich industrial countries, shrimps are considered a delicacy. However, consumers know only very little about the farming of shrimps as well as its environmental and economic impacts.