Community Profile – Emilio Lucitande

Norma Payaguaje and Emilio Lucitande: Husband and Wife San Pablo, Secoya territory Where were you born? I was born in Puerto Asis, Colombia. My father was Cofán and my mother was Siona. I grew up speaking A’ingae and Pai’ coca. Tell me about your childhood. When I was little we lived in a small community […]

In The Time of Chonta

By Alex Goff, Field Coordinator The fruit from the chonta palm is so important to the peoples of the Amazon that in the past the annual harvest would mark the passing of each year for many tribes. Chonta, Bactris gasipeas, or peach palm in English, grows throughout the Amazon basin and is used by most indigenous […]

Huangana: Bounty of the Forest

By Alex Goff, Field Coordinator Waorani can smell a pack of huangana, or white-lipped peccary, before any of the animals have even appeared, and even after they have passed. Huangana travel in large packs, with sometimes as many as 80 or 100 animals. For the hunting cultures of the Amazon, huangana embody the bounty of […]

Going to School in Secoya Territory

By Alex Goff, Field Coordinator It’s 5:00 am in San Pablo, Secoya territory. The sun timidly peaks through the trees. Soon it will bathe the entire forest in a deep yellow light. A thick mist hangs along the riverbank. It will dissipate with the encroaching sun, giving way to the Secoya canoes that transit the […]

Painting Life in the Rainforest With the Cofan

By Alex Goff, Field Coordinator When Emergildo Criollo leads a day of art with the Cofán children of Sinangue, it’s more than just a chance for the kids to have fun and paint. It’s also a chance for them to learn about Cofán life and culture in the rainforest from the time of their grandparents. […]

ClearWater’s New Map and the Mad Genius Behind It

The central component of ClearWater’s recent website relaunch is the new, cutting-edge, interactive online map that displays the impact of oil drilling and industrialization on the once-pristine rainforest region of Ecuador’s northern Amazon. But in addition to the negative impact, the map allows the user to scroll around and zoom in to learn about the […]

A Video Tour with ClearWater to Mark Our ‘Re-Launch’

Yesterday, we unveiled a new ClearWater website, with an amazing new interactive map, overviews of some of ClearWater’s new programs—territorial mapping, new media training, legal advocacy—and a powerful new photo-montage video narrated by the inimitable Peter Coyote. While the website overhaul was happening and the re-launch being planned, work in the field hasn’t slowed down […]

Visiting Homes for ClearWater

  By Alex Goff, Field Coordinator Over the past two years ClearWater has been refining the process of building rain catchment systems with the indigenous nationalities of Ecuador’s northern Amazon rainforest. An early step, and one of most important in this process, is to visit every home in the communities that will be participating in […]

Miwaguno and Tobeta: The Need For Water

By Alex Goff, Field Coordinator Along the Via Pindo, amid a snaking network of oil roads, mestizo farmer communities, Shuar and Kichwa villages, oil wells and company outposts, sit the Waorani communities of Miwaguno and Tobeta. This is block 14, operated by the Chinese oil company Andes Petrol, a seemingly lawless land on the frontier […]

Remediation in Rumipamba

The Kichwa community of Rumipamba has been at the epicenter of Texaco’s contamination in the region and the 20-year legal battle to bring the company to justice. Rumipamba community member Maria Aguinda is the lead plaintiff in the lawsuit against the company. As a result of Texaco’s operations, local water sources are highly polluted and […]