Here is an entry from our 2015 Sustaining the Amazon group journal.
Going into the hydro-electric dam, we thought we would be hearing positive information about alternative energy. However, after our visit, the cons seemed to outnumber the pros.
Despite the independence Ecuador would gain by not relying on outside sources for energy, they are losing millions of dollars. Every time they choose a wrong path for the tunnels under the mountains, they plan a new path, not knowing for certain what obstacles they may drill into. Only 45% done with the project, they are way over budget and in hundreds of billions of dollars in debt to China who is financing the project.
It was interesting to hear about the dynamic between Ecuador and China. Politically, they seem to be on good terms. However, in the future Ecuador will be in a massive amount of debt. Socially, it seemed like the local workers tolerated the Chinese workers. When we were at the dam, one of the men showing us around said, “Eventually, we’ll all be wearing red shirts” and squinted his eyes. It was interesting to hear nationality0based comments that were about a situation in which America wasn’t involved. We are often so centric on America’s issues that we don’t realize what else is going on in the world.
– Sara & Anna