I arrived yesterday morning after a long flight with surprise stops in Bonaire and Guayaquil. The flight was relatively uneventful. The usual chitchat, some sleep and "No Country for Old Men" did it for me as far as entertainment goes.
Breakfast of Champions
I met Santiago (Villamarin), the curator of entomology at the Museum of Natural History in Quito (MECN), for lunch. He is supposed to be coming in April and I had been nagging him last week to get all the information for visa requirements from the British Consulate. Turns out he's been having to deal with the aftermath of Ben Samphire's tragic death (see previous post) because the Museum was their official Ecuadorian counterpart. There's bits of scattered information, nobody really knows what happened. Communication with the Police has been difficult and the other person accompanying Ben Samphire has left the country (can't blame them for that). So it seems to be somewhat messy. I am going to the consulate with Santiago this morning so might have some more information later on.
I saw this article in this morning's edition of "El Comercio" about a massive oil leak (+/- 21000 gallons) from a burst pipe in the vicinity of Santa Rosa. The CONAIE, the indigenous federation declared a state of emergency in all the zones affected by the leak.
Location of the Spill
Approximately 47 communities living on the Rivers Coca and Napo have been affected by the leak and there's currently an investigation and impact assessment being done. Apparently the water in both rivers is completely polluted. This is a big, big leak!. I am heading down to Coca today and I have some time this weekend so I will try and make down to see whether I can take some photographs before heading to Tena for the meeting with the Ministry of the Environment, the DED and Gran Sumaco Project.