August 9: International Day of the World’s Indigenous People

5:30am, Sarstún, Guatemala: The sun has not quite risen, but you can smell tortillas. Women move in and out of their small houses, starting to cook for the day. Most men left home in the early hours to trek down muddy paths towards the fields. The day starts early here because there is a lot to be done. Here, a young man named Samuel Coc Yat measures old trees and plants new ones, checks in with families who have just started using fuel-efficient stoves, and talks to teenagers about the role they can play in conserving their environment. He is a field technician with EcoLogic, and like almost everyone else in the area, he’s Maya K’ekchi’.

Samuel Coc Yat, indigenous Maya K'ekchi EcoLogic field technician

EcoLogic field technician Samuel Coc Yat is a member of the indigenous Maya K’ekchi’ community in Sarstún, Guatemala (Photo: Lee Shane)


Supporter Spotlight: Lisa Leff Cooper

Why do you support EcoLogic?

Lisa Leff Cooper

Lisa Leff Cooper

My husband and I first got to know Central America as adoptive parents of our daughter, born in Guatemala, and we quickly fell in love with the people, cultures and landscapes of the region. We wanted to make a difference and began searching for ways to help spur sustainable economic development across the region.

With my professional background in sustainable investing, I was particularly interested in supporting models providing both economic opportunities for people and communities and protection for the natural resources of this very special part of the world. When we were introduced to EcoLogic, we knew we’d found an on-the-ground organization making real and lasting impact — and doing it in a way that empowers communities for the long-term.

Read more about why Lisa Leff Cooper believes that EcoLogic is making a real difference in Central America & Mexico

INFOGRAPHIC: How EcoLogic is Helping Fight Climate Change in Mesoamerica

Climate change is a huge threat to the people & places where EcoLogic works.

Climate change is already causing a cascade of negative effects on the environment, human society, and nature. Central America and southern Mexico are experiencing these impacts in particularly acute ways because of their proximity to the equator.

Many of the approaches that are part of EcoLogic’s toolkit of solutions are helping local people in Central America and Mexico to adapt to the effects of climate change (and in some cases, like with our CarbonPlus program, mitigate its impacts as well). Reforestation, building fuel-efficient stoves, environmental education, and payment for ecosystem services projects, for example, all help rural communities build resilience in the face of climate disruption.

Check out the infographic below to learn more!


On World Environment Day, Consume Water with Care

by Madeleine Freundlich

On June 5, millions of people around the globe will plant seeds, recycle bottles, and start brand new clean energy projects—all in honor of United Nations World Environment Day. In a Filipino city called Talisay, families will start the day by walking through the streets collecting trash. A small elementary school in Fiji will hold a competition for best recycled art projects. And in Olanchito, Honduras, families at EcoLogic’s Communities Organizing for Watersheds project site will come together to clean waste from streams—just like they do every day.

Boy drinking water in Honduras

A boy drinks water from the tap in northern Honduras

World Environment Day has been observed annually since 1972, with the goal of inspiring people across the globe to protect our scarce natural resources. The day’s theme this year is “Consuming with Care.” The United Nations Environment Program is urging people to think about water consumption in particular, as humans can access and safely drink only .05% of the water on our planet. Due to thoughtless overconsumption, that percentage is quickly shrinking.


Truly Sustainable Development on Biodiversity Day (and every day)

By Ryan Mitchell and Devyn Powell

Today, May 22, is the International Day for Biological Diversity—an occasion celebrated every year to remind us how important it is to protect the many rich and varied forms of life that share our planet. This year, the United Nations’ theme for this day is “Biodiversity for Sustainable Development.”

Suspension bridge, Pico Bonito National Park, Honduras

Members of EcoLogic’s staff and Board of Directors cross a suspension bridge in beautiful Pico Bonito National Park, Honduras—a hotspot of tropical biodiversity (Photo: Nick Shufro)

EcoLogic and our local partners work to protect biodiversity in Central America and Mexico—the region known as Mesoamerica, and one of the most biologically diverse parts of the world—every day. But on this day of recognition, we are proud join the international community in this celebration of the amazing variety of life on Earth.


INFOGRAPHIC: Agroforestry & Climate Change

What is agroforestry?

Agroforestry is an agricultural technique that combines trees with crops (or livestock) to create environmental, economic, and social benefits. There are several types of agroforestry, but the main approach that EcoLogic uses in our projects is called alley-cropping, which means planting food crops between rows of trees.

It is one of the solutions that EcoLogic uses to help benefit people and nature in our project sites in Central America and Mexico.

Sustainable agriculture techniques like agroforestry can help address serious threats and challenges, including climate change. See how below!