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Story Publication logo February 12, 2021

Fever, Balsa Wood, and Pandemic in Achuar Territory (Spanish)


The Jirijirimo waterfall, on the Yaigojé river, in the Brazilian state of Amazonas.

The FLARES FROM THE AMAZON project seeks to warn of the increased dangers of deforestation and...

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The  Covid-19 pandemic was the pretext that extractive companies found to continue exploiting indigenous territories with more intensity, while everyone is looking elsewhere.

In the Ecuadorian Amazon, for example, indiscriminate felling of balsa wood was triggered, exerting great pressure on the middle and lower basin of the Pastaza River, in the territory of the Achuar, as well as that of others such as the Kichwa, Shuar, and Waorani; a pressure that highlights the extent to which the impacts derived from extractivism in the Amazon region are being disastrous these days.

Furthermore, in the midst of a health emergency, the effects on the local population are even greater. In the Amazon of Ecuador, the raft fever, with the arrival of hundreds of loggers for massive felling of this precious Amazonian wood, became the fatal source of contagion of the coronavirus in the Amazonian indigenous communities.

Read the rest of this story in English on the openDemocracy website, or in Spanish on the El País website.