Int. J. of Environmental Policy and Decision Making   »   2015 Vol.1, No.3



Title: Environmental policies and Pachamama in Ecuador. Theory and practice in Rafael Correa's Government (2007-2013)


Author: Santiago García Álvarez


Address: Instituto de Altos Estudios Nacionales (IAEN), Universidad Central del Ecuador (UCE), Ecuador


Abstract: The aim of this paper is to analyse the environmental policies implemented in Ecuador in the period from 2007 to 2013. According to the Ecuadorian Constitution these policies must be based on the promotion of the sumak kawsay or well-being, which promotes harmonic relations between human beings' activities and the Pachamama or Mother Nature. From the theoretical perspective, this approach is related to biocentrism and the super strong sustainability. But in the real world, the Ecuadorian Government has failed to implement a long-term strategy for protecting the Pachamama, because it is not easy to forget the social and economic necessities of its citizens. Anyway, this interesting experience gives us an important alternative which is the Net Avoided Emissions (NAE). This mechanism is closely linked to the concept of super strong sustainability and biocentrism that criticises the global carbon market.


Keywords: sustainability; wellbeing; environmental policy; biocentrism; Pachamama; Ecuador; sumak kawsay; net avoided emissions; NAE; carbon markets; buen vivir; sustainable development.


DOI: 10.1504/IJEPDM.2015.074299


Int. J. of Environmental Policy and Decision Making, 2015 Vol.1, No.3, pp.227 - 239


Date of acceptance: 19 Jul 2015
Available online: 21 Jan 2016



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