|Teaser Text||Ecuador is a country defined by its geography: firstly, as its name suggests, by its location at zero degrees latitude, and secondly by a varied topography ranging from 20 000ft volcanoes to coastal mangrove swamps. It is also a rapidly developing and ethnically diverse nation facing a variety of environmental challenges, not least an expanding urban population, increasing consumerism and increasing waste arisings.
As part of the Embassy’s Vuelvete Verde! (Become Green!) campaign programme, it organised a stimulating and packed agenda – presentations, meetings with municipalities, environmental non-governmental organisations and a one-day conference.
Monday was spent in Quito, the capital. Stunningly located amidst dormant volcanoes at a literally breath-taking altitude of around 9 000ft, and with a growing population of 2-3m, the city has a problem with the amount and type of waste it landfills. Waste arisings in the city have increased rapidly in recent years, although at around 250kg per person per year it is still around half that of the UK. The city currently sends up to 2 000 tonnes per day (tpd) to the municipal landfill; at current rates this will be full by 2012.|