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Wind Power News: Ecuador

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These news and opinion items are gathered by National Wind Watch in its noncommercial educational effort to help keep readers informed about developments related to industrial wind energy. They do not necessarily reflect the opinions of National Wind Watch. They are the products of and owned by the organizations or individuals noted and are shared here according to “fair use” and “fair dealing” provisions of copyright law.

December 1, 2021 • Ecuador, OpinionsPrint storyE-mail story

A green paradox: Deforesting the Amazon for wind energy in the Global North

What has the destruction of balsa trees in the Ecuadorian Amazon rainforest got to do with the wind power industry in Europe? As the international commitment to renewable energy has grown in recent years, the increase in wind farms has triggered a huge demand for balsa wood, leaving a trail of deforestation in its wake. Balsa wood is used in Europe, and also more intensively in China, as a component in the construction of the blades of wind turbines. Already-installed . . . Complete story »

January 29, 2021 • Americas, EcuadorPrint storyE-mail story

A worrying windfall – The wind-power boom set off a scramble for balsa wood in Ecuador

In late 2019 loggers started arriving in Ewegono, a village of nine indigenous Waorani families on the Curaray river in the Ecuadorean Amazon. They were looking for balsa, a fast-growing species of tree whose wood is used in blades for wind-power turbines. There was a global shortage. At first, villagers “grabbed chainsaws, axes and machetes to cut it down”, says Saúl Nihua, Ewegono’s leader. The pay could be $150 a day, a fortune in a region where most people have . . . Complete story »

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