Fundación Pachamama’s Renewable Energies Program is working with Achuar communities to develop a solar-powered river transport system.

Canoes will be built with solar panels installed on their roofs, charging batteries stored within the canoe and powering the boat’s electric motor. This project was initiated to meet four key needs within the Amazon rainforest generally and Achuar territory in particular.

Rainforest Preservation

The territory of the Achuar nationality is one of the most biodiverse forests in the world, where no commercial or industrial activities take place and where roads have not been built. For this reason, renewable energies represent an enormous possibility for the Achuar, allowing them to travel on the rivers without damaging the ecosystem they have preserved so well.

Sustainable Development

The Achuar are firmly against oil exploitation in their lands and look for a more sustainable solution to meet their transportation needs. Solar-powered transportation is a practical example of their commitment to developing sustainable development alternatives.

Noise Reduction

A solar-powered motor system does not produce noise. This helps to conserve the Amazonian ecosystems by reducing disruption to the activity of other living beings, preserving the atmosphere found within the forest.

Reduced Fuel Costs

All fuel enters Achuar territory by means of air transport, seeing that there are no roads into their lands. This means a gallon of gas costs four times more than the national average. These costs can be reduced by considering new alternatives to gas-powered transport.

The following diagram describes how the system will operate.

Canoes Reinforce Indigenous View of the Rainforest

Governments, universities, and research centers are paying close attention to solar-powered river transport systems throughout the world. The construction of solar canoes opens up the possibility to develop practical and feasible alternatives to the needs of Achuar communities.

This project is a pioneer example for the Achuar that reinforces their ancient relationship with the Amazon, not as a forest full of resources to be exploited, but as living space that should be respected through non-destructive activities.

Fundación Pachamama is excited to work together with the Achuar on this innovative project that offers a social and economic alternative for the Amazon and the world!

Did you like this project?

Join us as a Global Citizen monthly donor at any level to support this and new economic alternatives in the Amazon.

More About What Global Citizens Accomplish