Gov’t seeks private power generation; Illegal mining pollutes rivers near Sigsig; ‘Micro-vehicle’ regulation planned; Report suspicious document offers

May 14, 2024 | 0 comments

Lunes, 13/5/2024

Hola, Todos –

Actividades –

Titular –

Sígsig acorralado por la pequeña y artesanal minería (Sígsig cornered by small scale and artisanal mining) – Mining, especially illegal mining, surrounds Sígsig. The canton’s mayor and city technicians have received threats, and the Santa Bárbara River is possibly contaminated with heavy metals. The Ministerio del Ambiente, Agua y Transición Ecológica (MAATE – Ministry of Environment, Water and Ecological Transition) in Zone 6 said that there are 21 areas in which concessions for small and artesanal mining have been granted but only 5 are regulated and have complied with the procedures to get on the environmental register. Technicians have not made control inspections since diciembre of 2023 because the area is dangerous.

New low-cost apartments go on the market with opening of a new “social interest” condominium complex in Cuenca. Prices range from $66,000 to $76,000 for two- and three-bedroom units. (El Mercurio)

So authorities don’t know if the concessions are operating in an illegal manner. When MAATE goes on operations with other Governmental agencies such as the armed forces, they find the mines are cleared of equipment, supplies and people. The canton was able to take water samples from where the Santa Bárbara River originates and found 10 of the 11 samples not healthy for aquatic life or wildlife. 2 of those 10 samples were not suitable for recreational activities they contained heavy metals such as lead and mercury.

De El Mercurio del viernes, 10/5 (1 article):
Anuncian revisión de tarifas eléctricas (Review of electric rates announced) – Pres. Noboa gave the MInisterio de Energía 20 days to complete the technical and legal reports that will allow the granting of a 50% reduction in April´s electric bills to ratepayers. This compensation for any damage due to the electrical shutoffs <Poor baby, you had to drink warm beer?> will cost $40 million.

Brief items:
-9 photovoltaic projects have been signed, but not executed because there is no fideicomiso (trust) that can assure payment to the power generators.
-The Ministerio de Enerbía has received 64 offers for electrical generation on land and sea. As of now, 2 barcazas (barges – our word for the day) generating 160 megawatts have been contracted for.
-90% of the energy is produce by the public sector and the participation of the private sector is being requested to contribute with energy and investment. <Good luck with that. A country that’s broke will probably get investment at rates the mafia would be ashamed to ask for.>

Cuenca –

Viviendas desde USD 66,000 en proyecto de EMUVI (Homes from USD 66,000 in EMUVI project) – This “social interest” condo complex developed by the Empresa Municipal de y Vivienda has 18 three BR and 58 two BR apartments, and a suite with prices from $66,000 to $76,000, and 8 commercial spaces. Priority for the condos will be to families of limited means with members who are in socially vulnerable groups including people with catastrophic illnesses, single mothers and with disabilities. Buyers will need to meet certain requirements and there will be 95% financing at 4.99% with 20-25 year term.

Exportación de flores por el Día de la Madre subió 8% (Mother’s Day flower exports rose 8%) – According to Alejandro Martínez, president of the Asociación Nacional de Productores de Flores del Ecuador (Expoflores), flower exports for Mother’s Day rose 8%. He said in 2024, 21,000 tons of flowers, 75% of them roses, were exported. The main market is the US. <Although with this new trade agreement with China, who knows.>

Urge medidas de seguridad (Urge for security measures) – Specialists in road security agree that implementation of regulatory measures for the safety of micro-vehicles is urgent. Currently there is no requirement for drivers of these vehicles to comply with safety measures such as wearing helmets or reflective clothing at night. In marzo of 2024, the Cantonal Council had its first debate on the Ordenanza para la Promoción de Fortalecimiento y Regulación de Movilidad Activa y Micromovilidad. The regulation will cover vehicles with a maximum speed of 15 kph, a weight equal or less than 100 kilograms, and powered by human or clean energy.

The maximum size is less or equal to 1.3 x 1.95 x 2.70 meters with a cargo capacity of equal or less than 300 kg or one cubic meter. The regulation called for drivers to use reflectors, lights, helmets and other types of protection. <Time for you to haul out those leathers – ever wonder why bikers wear a lot of leather? I don’t think the only reason is to look tough.> Another regulation was to prohibit wearing of articles that would interfere with proper hearing. <Not worth blasting your favorite music through your earphones if it means not hearing that ambulance about to hit you.>

Campaña anticorrupción (Anti-corruption campaign) – If you receive an irregular offer for Agencia Nacional de Tránsito services through social networks, in the areas around the ANT offices, or inside their offices, you can report it and your identity will be kept confidential. You can write to denuncia@ant.gob.ec and describe the type of service that was offered including licenses, titles, paperwork, fines and others as well as the medium through which the offer was made and the price for the service. <Now I can understand you’re not reporting this if you took someone up on an offer and bought yourself a real, genuine, authentic driver’s license without taking the test. Just look in the mirror before you complain about how Ecuador is such a corrupt country.>

And that’s all for today so hasta ? –

Jeanne

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