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The word “Cuenca” means “watershed” which is appropriate. A confluence of four rivers run through town on their way to the Amazon. In fact, the town’s full name, “Santa Ana de los Cuatro Ríos de Cuenca” pays tribute to the Tomebamba, Yanuncay, Tarqui and Machangara rivers. The Rio Tomebamba flows along the border between the historic...
By Lance Morton Millions of metric tons of plastic are produced worldwide every year. While half of this plastic waste is recycled, incinerated, or discarded into landfills, a significant portion of what remains eventually ends up in our oceans. In fact, many pieces of ocean plastic waste have come together to create a vortex of plastic waste thrice the size...
The government said Thursday that it will provide full details of its plan to eliminate subsidies for Extra and Ecopaís gasoline Friday, June 14. In an interview on Radio EXA, Finance Minister Juan Carlos Vega said that the subsidy would be phased out during the remainder of the year, with total elimination expected before December....
By Gabriela Mesones Rojo and Alicia Chen Last August, Ecuadorians made history by voting to permanently keep over 700 million barrels of crude oil in the ground beneath Yasuní National Park, one of the most biodiverse areas on earth. This made Ecuador the first country in the world to halt oil exploitation through a referendum. Despite the...
By Eglė Gerulaitytė  A small, makeshift booth with sheets of corrugated metal for a roof served as the immigration and customs office in the desolate, desert-like landscape separating south-west Bolivia from north-eastern Chile. Inside, two officers huddled around a kettle and a wooden desk sipping hot tea. After they stamped my passport, one of them suggested...
U.S. ambassador to Ecuador Michael Fitzpatrick says he leaves his diplomatic post in Quito “with great optimism” for Ecuador’s future. “I am sad to be leaving so many friends, but professionally speaking, I leave with a lot of optimism for Ecuador and its future,” he said in a Wednesday interview which was posted on his...
Miércoles, 12/6/2024 Hola, Todos – Actividades – Danza, música y rituales en tres días de Inti Raymi (Dance, music and rituals in three days of Inti Raymi) – Ingapirca will be the epicenter of Inti Raymi or the Festival of the Sun, the largest manifestation of the Andean identity in southern Ecuador. It will be...
Swiss energy commodities trader Gunvor has paid Ecuador $93.6 million in an agreement reached in a corruption case and the funds have been credited to the country’s treasury, the Attorney General’s office reported Monday. The company pleaded guilty in a U.S. court in March to violating corruption laws and paying Ecuadorian officials bribes from 2012...
By Jeremiah Reardon Cuenca’s Hearts of Gold charity is celebrating ten years of service in Ecuador. It is a registered and qualified Ecuadorian non-profit organization. At the invitation of Frances (Franny) Hogg, Hearts of Gold Event Chair, I attended the Hearts of Gold High Tea which took place a couple of weeks ago at Kolo...
A survey conducted by security consultant and university professor Katherine Herrera reports that 60% of Ecuador criminal gang members are under the age of 18. Her study also found that more than 50% of those arrested for alleged gang activity since the beginning of 2024 are minors. In a Teleamazonas interview, Herrera said that children...
By Kate Irwin To some extent, an AI model is only as “smart” as the data it’s trained on — and Yann LeCun, Meta’s Chief AI Scientist, argues that large language models (LLMs) like ChatGPT, Google’s Gemini, or Meta’s Llama won’t ever reach human levels of intelligence. The concept of an AI model achieving human...
By Paola Flores If it were anywhere else in South America, the nondescript house with buckets of coca leaves soaking in liquid could be mistaken for a clandestine cocaine lab. But this is La Paz, Bolivia, and the fruity aroma of coca steeping in barrels signals that you’ve arrived at the government-authorized El Viejo Roble...

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The Cuenca Dispatch

Week of June 16

Noboa’s Government Moves to End Fuel Gasoline Subsidies, Highlighting Inequities for Low-Income Groups.

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Cuenca-Girón-Pasaje Road to Temporarily Close for Pipeline Replacement.

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Ecuador to Initiate Construction of $52 Million ‘Bukele-Style’ Prison to Combat Organized Crime.

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