Economic and cultural sphere has always been the sole driver of many nations gearing towards development, stability and create revenue for the respective nations. However, issues have been raised over the years pertaining the attributes of technology towards both fields. As much as technology serves as the key point in ensuring development for a nation revolving around the two spheres, still, there are mixed reactions focusing on the issue of technology and development.
However, this paper focuses on Yasuni, Ecuador, which is one of the existing diversified forests in the world. Our attention is directed to the questions posed by Meera Nanda, who is a critique and rejectionist of the modern post-development activities.
Meera advocated conservation and rejected modern technology, insisting that people should not treat it like “religion” that they implement every law that technology brings to the modern world. In short, Nanda called for the political activists and people who support technology in various fields should take the consequences that technology brings forth. Also, the need to focus first on humans was called for, focusing on their social and political life; thus, technology should come second (Nanda 1991).
First, Nanda did not reject the fact that science should be introduced to the “third world” countries, since such will be as well as denying the people in this world their rights. In our case, Yusani reflects the “third world”, which entails the “uncivilized” and the two tribe habitats can be described as “non-westernized.” In her light, Nanda supports the ITT agreement introduced since it supports the introduction of technology to these people, as much as they might be rigid towards it. The habitats of Yusani can be more of restoring, conserving and maintaining their culture, but the fact that there is technology, their beliefs should not hinder the government from introducing it to these people. However, she was against some practices as discussed below.
Yasuni is part of the Amazon forest that is home to many diversified species in the world including humans. It is a cultural place that is a home for two major tribes, Taromenane and Tagaeri, who have so far settled in smaller communities due to the missionary activities and oil discoveries that took place almost fifty years ago. The nomadic communities have to move in search of a better place, but still managed to settle around Yasuni and are found in this place today. Other habitats of Yasuni are wild animals of different species that this place has forever been their home, but the introduction of new ways, technology and modernization has discouraged the features of such species inhabiting this place.
In terms of plantation, Yasuni, also, is the home for many species that can only be found there in the entire world. Specific mammals, amphibians, bird species, amphibians among others are found specifically in Yasuni. Its unique features and inhabitants make this place a culturally filled region, which when invaded all this might be loosed and render the only diversified region on the world extinct. As much as there is an introduction of some development incentive established in this region over the years, still, there are features worth maintaining. Just like Moora advocated environmental friendly place and a cultural-rich field, Yusani has managed to be one although it cannot be compared with fifty years ago. This shows what Moora advocated since the communities have moved to different places, lived in smaller communities than before, and the species initially found slowly becoming extinct characterizes Yusani today. The species serve as the “victims of the western science”, who, on the other hand, do not need it to survive.
Today, the greatest Eucador’s mineral is oil, which its extraction has been debated for years worldwide. However, since 2007, Eucador’s president passed a constitution to reserve the large oil lands in Yusani for the sake of the indigenous groups that exist in the respective regions. As much as the region would have served a great economic gain if the country ventured in oil, still it is an economic gain although in the hands of another nation. Political power enabled the leaders of Eucador to preside over the conservation measures but in return for economic gain and conservation. As much as the measures upheld by the nation encourage conservation, still the government fails to uphold its measures fully in terms of conservation. As much as this proposal is one of a kind and for once focuses on the habitats of Yusani, still, there lie political interests that render the proposal incapacitated. As much as the system upholds what Moora highly rejected, still, there lie loopholes since the environment renders the two tribes and other inhabitants of Yusani extinct. In the light of Moore, the government upholds what is right since it is aimed at maintaining the environment and the indigenous species found in that location, as much as them venturing into it much more would lead to great benefits that the world could have, and great economic exports of oil in the entire world.
Nature constitution that came in handy with the introduction of the ITT proposal focuses on strategic places that incorporate technology in tits extraction and acquisition of resources. As much as precautionary measures were taken pertaining the conservation of the environment around the oil fields, United Nations Development Program was set to monitor conservation, social development and ensure conservation. However, in matters such as carbon emission, there cannot be effective laws that are meant to govern the emissions during oil extraction. For example, Yusani Guarantee Certificate is meant to estimate the carbon emission from the oil extraction process, and compensations made pertaining the estimated carbon. However, this comes with modernization and cooperation of nations that as much as they have the urge to obtain oil from Yusani, still they put the life of the indigenous people and species at risk. This is what Nanda termed as the “knowledge that the indigenous people will never get to understand,” since they will have their own way of adapting to the “evils” surrounding them. These “alternative idioms” renders the practices of the indigenous difficult, with the western nations introducing westernize through Eucador’s government, which incorporates modern science in order to adopt into the local setting for their own benefit.
According to Nanda, such treatment of non-westernized nations end up bringing their culture down, which is fully supported by such activities going on in Yusani in return of oil benefits (Nanda 1995). And according to Yusani’s case, the overall leaders in favor of the agreement are rational in that they would like to conserve the diversified species in the region, and as much as they leaders try to think rationally, still, there lie elements that are rendered irrational because it does not consider the welfare of the general society under Yusani that ends up suppressing the culture of one community. As Nanda continued, she criticized the fact that people could not easily distinguish facts from what is a mere belief, thus, increased more irrational activities and falsifiable activities. According to this case, this can be linked to the reasons that the outside link with Eucador’s government in terms of maintaining the indigenous culture and species, but in the real sense exploitation of oil under Yusani’s ground will lead to the dispersion and extinction of the habits in these region. The failure of the government to see the repercussions and its collaboration with outsiders and introducing modern ways in approaching this situation will not serve its purpose as they expect.
Notably, Nanda is not against science and technology in the “noon-westernized” nations, but actually she advocates measures that will come as a result of the introduction of new science methods. The adoption of various methods by the Eucador’s government to solve the issue opil mining will bring forth in Yusani supports the thinking of Nanda and at no point the government lets its decisions fall in the hands of the people. As muchthere might be a lag in the implementation of the processes required, still, the government makes efforts in ensuring the safety of these people and the Museum in Yusani that serves one of the greatest economic gains to the country.
Nanda was not for the idea that the choice of “westernization” depended on the hands of very few and the powerful in the society. Instead, she advocated democracy and criticized dictatorship in terms of science and technology. In our case, the fact the government is the one to make a choice for a few living in Yusani makes the decisions non-democratic. The government had initially launched a constitution to maintain its reserves, but in an effort of eradicating poverty and making use of the resources it has, it ended u deciding for the region extraction oil from the region regardless of the people living there.
As much as there were principles laid in accordance with the oil extraction that was aimed in environmental conservation and maintenance of the habitats, still there are activities that the government did not put in mind and take the effects by them. For example, the Texaco leftovers in Eucador after their extraction process. They left harmful products in Yusani land; they hid other wasteful products in the land and did not clean the waste products in accordance with the law. However, the government did not realize such activities, thus, the inhabitants of Yusani ended up taking the effects by themselves and their lives being endangered too. This is as discussed before, what Nanda was against and the fact that the government should be responsible for its activities, but it never did accordingly.
Nanda was also for the idea that resources should be distributed equally in terms of science and technology introduction in the “third world”. However, following the introduction of ITT constitution, the negative effects followed unequal distribution, further division of Eucador and the diverse communities ending up not protected. This critic by Nanda aimed at ensuring that every person beneath the effect of science and technology laws are protected, to avoid the repercussion as shown from the ITT constitution in Eucador.
Nanda served a purpose in criticizing technology and science introduction focusing on “third-world” countries, which displays the effects as portrayed in Yusani. Her works serve the purpose in implementing decisions, use and distribution of resources and at the same time educate the “indigenous.” Thus, if much keen is put on her criticism, the situation in Eucador today could be avoidable and the resources, nature, habitats and diversity maintained. With this, the economic drive of the nation with the cultural beliefs of the people affected in Eucador could be highly maintained, and these situations controlled than how it is today.
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