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Newsletter +++ October November 2021 +++


+++In October, Nancy Duman began organizing citizen participation in the development and design of the Archipel Humboldt Marine Protected Area. (see article "Education and outreach activities are being expanded". For this purpose, she met with fishermen from Chungungo and Pt. de Choros on October 15 and 23. The aim was to clarify the meaning and perspectives of citizen participation. On the same topic, she organised a workshop in Los Choros on 30 October, which was attended by representatives of the fishermen from Los Choros, Pt. de Choros and Chungungo as well as the citizens' initiative MODEMA. The initiative was welcomed by the participants and considered important. They will now discuss the topic of "citizen participation" in their organisations.

+++In two video conferences, Dr Alejandro Simenone (Universidad Andrés Bello, Santiago) informed the supporters (1) of the "Research for Survival" project about the planning and status of the research work. Immediately before the start of the work on the Chilean islands, Dr. Simeone gave an engaging and vivid description of the significance, objectives and his expectations. The sponsors were particularly impressed by the great commitment of the Chilean researchers. At the end of November, the researchers sent the first pictures of the work on the breeding islands.
(1) Species Protection Foundation Zoo Karlsruhe, Dr. Reinschmidt, Dr. Becker as well as support association Tierpark Hagenbeck, board members, Mr Bartelt, Mr Crasselt.

+++Alianza Humboldt organised "velatones" (wakes) in Los Choros, Punta de Choros, Chanaral de Aceituno and in the Plaza de Armas in La Serena to raise awareness of the threat posed by the Cruz Grande port project (company Companía Minera del Pacífico-CMP) before the hearing at the Antofagasta Environmental Court. The construction of the Cruz Grande harbour would have the same impacts as the Dominga project harbour: destruction of a particularly valuable ecosystem, lasting damage to the fishing grounds of artisanal fishermen and significant populations of marine mammals and seabirds through construction and operation. On 3 November, the Alianza also drew attention to the "Cruz Grande" problem in an unusual way and marched through the centre of La Serena with a "Requiem" (funeral march). The hearing in the case "expired licence of the Cruz Grande port project" took place - as scheduled - on 4 November at the Antofagasta Environmental Court. The impression was that the construction of the harbour was to be pushed through at all costs. The lawyers of the CMP company and the licensing authority were very much in agreement and took the view that the licence for the Cruz Grande port had not lapsed even though construction had not started within 5 years - as required.

+++On 11 August, the Commission for Environmental Impact Assessment (COEVA) of the Coquimbo region approved the Dominga project of the Andes Iron company. The deadline for submitting appeals against this decision was 28 October. About 30 appeals were filed, both by individuals and by various associations, including fishermen's unions, Alianza Humboldt and NGOs such as Oceana.

+++At the end of October, beginning of November, a training course for professional divers on diving safety was to take place in the coastal villages of La Higuera. Unfortunately, the workshop had to be cancelled due to the pandemic. The French experts could not enter or would have had to spend the time in quarantine instead of in training.

+++SPHENISCO is expanding its education and outreach work in the Coquimbo region. For this purpose, Karen Quezada was hired on 1 November (see article "Education and outreach activities are being expanded").

+++The petition "Humboldt penguins finally need protection!" has been running since mid-October. So far, it has not been possible to spread the petition widely in Chile. Karen Quezada is working to address this lack with newsletters, in relevant networks, with information stands at markets and in universities.

+++On 16 November, Defensa Ambiental 4th Region organised another workshop with the members of the Constituent Assembly. Deputies Ivanna Olivares, Trinidad Castillo, Daniel Bravo and Carlos Calvo spoke about and discussed "Citizen Participation and the New Constitution". The two workshops took place in the Caleta of Pt. de Choros and in the Plaza of Los Choros.

+++On 29 and 30 November, hearings were held before the 3rd Chamber of the Corte Suprema on the Dominga mining and port project. (see article „Can it be 10 percent more destruction?“).


+++ In July, the research project "Breeding success on the Ballestas Islands?" began, or more precisely, was supposed to begin. At this point, ACOREMA had procured the necessary equipment to get started, but first had to go through a bureaucratic hurdle race lasting several months. It was not until November that the first pictures were taken of the breeding sites on the Ballestas (see article „First pictures of the project "Breeding success on the Ballestas?").


+++„Create space in the wardrobe" campaign. Our member Claudia Wirth from Munich had the idea and organised the action. The project kills 2 birds with one stone, sustainable waste disposal and clothing and (possibly) financial support for the protection of the Humboldt penguins. The campaign runs until the end of January, it started at the beginning of November. "Cleaning out" for the penguins gives - we hope - all penguin friends a whole new drive: cleaning up for species conservation.

+++The petition "Humboldt penguins finally need protection!" has been running since mid-October ( So far, over 70,000 people have supported the demand, most of them from Germany and France. This is a nice success, but unfortunately not yet enough to have a strong impact in Chile. We want to win 100,000 supporters and more. "Save the Rainforest" plans to send out an English newsletter in the next few days. This gives hope for another 20,000 to 30,000 supporters. It is unclear what resonance SPHENISCO has been able to achieve in the European zoo world so far. Christina Schubert wants to clarify this in talks with multipliers and suggest measures if necessary.

+++Once again, the "Penguin Wine", a Pinot Blanc from the Ramsel Winery in Kirrweiler, travels to the research station "Neumayer Station III" in Antarctica. This year, Palatinate winegrowers once again sent a wooden crate with good wines from Rhineland-Palatinate on a long journey as part of a campaign organised by the Struktur- und Genehmigungsdirektion (SGD), Neustadt/Weinstraße. Eye-catcher - right on top - the "Penguin Wine" with the great label by Andrea Ramsel. The 3rd vintage of "Penguin Wine" is harvested. Whether wine lovers and penguin lovers can look forward to such excellent quality again as in 2019 and 2020 is not yet certain after the very wet summer. What is certain, however, is that the enjoyment pays off for species conservation and penguins. Andrea and Karl Ramsel were once again able to donate 1,000 EUR to SPHENISCO. Many thanks!

+++A big thank you also goes to Paultons Park in England. The amusement park near Hampshire regularly supports the protection of the Humboldt penguins' habitat with generous donations.

W. K.

translated by Claudia Wirth

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