Improving Livelihoods in Esmeraldas, Ecuador

“Creciendo Esmeraldas con Energía Renovable” (CRECER) was a pilot programme implemented by CorpoEsmeraldas, Green Empowerment and FEDETA, and was supported by WISIONS. It aimed to improve the livelihoods of rural families in Rio Verde, Esmeraldas, Ecuador through the implementation of renewable energy technologies and sustainable agricultural practices.

The project’s initial objective was to improve cacao production and processing in ways that also restored the region’s fragile natural environment, improving lives and livelihoods while enhancing the resilience of rural communities in the face of climate change.

With the backing of our SEPS Energy Projects initiative, the project team installed passive solar dryers and biogas digester technologies to support smallholder cacao farmers. 18 months after successfully implementing the project, we continued to support the monitoring, evaluation and expansion activities.

The replication efforts (e.g. in Carchi and Manabí Provinces) focused both on building partner organisations’ technical capacity in biogas digesters and passive solar dryers, and on creating community interest in replicating these technologies and supporting associated agro-ecological training in the future.

Furthermore, the organisation of a national biodigester experience exchange event in September 2016 led to the creation of a national Ecuadorian biogas network (Red de Biodigestores del Ecuador, RedBioEc), which follows the principles of the neighbouring networks RedBioCOL and RedBioLAC.

More general information on the CRECER project is available on our SEPS project page: Improving Cacao Production and Processing While Meeting Cooking Fuel Demand in Ecuador (CRECER) 

More photos can be found on Facebook here.

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