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Chapter 5

Here we start off in the era of 1987-2000, which was the starting era of reform

throughout the country, and the convergence of many Eco-imperialists and Eco-dependents.

Their joining together helped the country centralize in on certain projects that help precedence

instead of spreading efforts throughout and leaving the poorest group grasping for resources.

Early in the chapter the comparison was made of non-native and invasive species being a

burdening problem throughout many countries, and their influence was brought in from

international influence. They mentioned this as a metaphor for the increasing issue of

international influence towing down the country in the form of drilling and mining.

The convergence of Eco-imperialists and Eco-dependents was both beneficial and

detrimental to the progression of ecological efforts throughout the country. The positive effects

of the partnership were the ability to convene on certain ideas and expedite their solutions,

allowing for what would normally be two groups to work together towards one common goal.

This could normally be stifled if the two groups were apart due to competition for workspace and

funds being allocated to certain projects. Formalized projects being performed by the Eco-

dependents that are more in line with Ecuador’s goals can be aided significantly by the foreign

funding brought in by the Eco-imperialists. Though there were downsides as well for this

grouping of the two large Environmental groups. The massive size of these groups was often too

massive in size and would stifle smaller more local environmentalist groups, causing them to

close their doors, which would in turn hurt the broader spectrum of projects. Along with that, the

issue of imperialists and dependents working together could create an issue of interests if the

government of Ecuador wanted to push back a project.
Much of the push toward the environmental movement within Ecuador at this time was

coming through the transnational funders, and the goal to strive for ultimately was sustainability.

The meeting in 1992 helped kickstart this goal for many South American countries with the

United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED). This conference

helped pave a way towards a more sustainable future for these developing countries, so they did

not go through the dirty, gritty, industrious period many first world countries did. The goal laid

out was to help in an effort of aiming them towards a trajectory that would put them ahead of

many countries in the world. This conference also arguably steered brazil towards their current

state of using corn as a primary fuel source.

After this conference with the UN, much of Ecuador’s government was clamoring to get

into the sustainability community to obtain a foothold forward in the economy. Their efforts

were put into a group called CAAM, or Presidents Environmental Advisory Commission. This

was an attempt to help start conservation projects and manage sustainable building projects, but

fell short in many facets. The largest issue was its inability to obtain proper funding, and relied

largely on the cashflow from the transnational sources that they were paired with.

This positive swing in the right direction put Ecuador on the map so to speak, and let

many international actors and NGO’s see the positive efforts in improving and protecting the

delicate ecosystem throughout the country. During the period of 1987-2000 there was also a

substantial increase of transnational funding due to this increased effort from ecodependent

organizations. Large scale projects were started for increased effort for conservation of

ecosystems and biodiversity from both USAID and a large Dutch governmental organization.

The significant increase from USAID went from a weak $5 million dollars, to a substantial $74

million dollars, in an effort to help both protect the rainforest and coastal areas of South
America, and allow for international research projects throughout the Americas. This increase in

funding allowed for a very large increase in ecodependent groups throughout Ecuador. Which

can have a positive effort in coverage and interest in the field, but also causes issues due to

spreading the work of numerous different projects throughout the country and may leave some

organizations without enough money to properly execute their plans.