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Venezuela International Essay: Analysis of the Role of Simon Bolivar

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The lovely country of Venezuela is a sight to see. It deserves to be recognized not only for its stunning landmarks like the Angel Falls and the Orinoco Delta but also for its lovely people. The citizens of Venezuela embody the spirit of resilience and companionship, especially in this time of desperation. Home to some of the most beautiful scenery, dynamic culture, and tasty cuisines, Venezuela is a country full of life and character, making it an inviting travel destination.

You can find Venezuela in the northern section of the South American continent. Its total area amounts to 912,050 square kilometers with a land area of 882, 050 square kilometers. The shape of the country an be compared to an inverted triangle. It borders Guyana on the east, Brazil on the South, Columbia on the west, and the Caribbean Sea in the north. In this Caribbean Sea, just off the coast of the country are 72 offshore islands. The country is roughly two times that California. It has 4,993 km of land boundaries and 2,800 km of coastline. In Venezuela the climate is typically subequatorial, meaning it lies near the equator. Like many countries near the equator, it is hot all year round. Much of the weather relies on seasonal winds and the rainy or dry seasons. The dry season ranges from mid-December to mid-April. The rainy season begins in late April and extends to mid-November. Rainy seasons are usually unpleasant. Although this is the general climate, all of Venezuela’s land barriers and features make for a varying climate throughout the large country. In the rainy season, precipitation may reach 78.7 inches. During summer months, which last from December to April, the weather is humid and hot, but calm. Contrastingly, the winter months which last from May to November are dry, warm, and overall comfortable. However, the country’s temperature still does not fluctuate much. In the spring, March through May, the temperature begins extremely hot and dry, but by April the rain returns. With the rain and hot temperatures, it is rather uncomfortable. In the summer months of June, July, and August, June is traditionally rainy like April and May. July often floods the capital city. In August locals usually have trouble in Los llanos because of swampy conditions forming. In fall, which is, September, October, and November, September and October bring an end to the rainy season. Precipitation and temperature lower until showers finally stop in November. This is ideal travel time for tourists. Winters, specifically December, January, and February, bring warmth and comfort. January and February are great times to visit.

Another reason to visit this wonderful country is its beautiful environment. Unfortunately, however, due to the country’s political unrest, the environment has been suffering severely. Venezuela is plagued with various issues. Their issues range from urbanization to pesticide abuse, waterway pollution, industrial waste, air pollution, gasoline consumption, as well as soil and forest resources exploitation. Because of all these problems, in 1976 the government established the Ministry of Environment and Renewable Natural Resources. The program established the Organic Law of the Environment, this along with many other laws has placed protections over soils, forests, and water supplies. It controls public sanitation and helps prevent the contamination of waterways, these are usually contaminated by oil. Much of the air pollution stems from issues with power plants, industry, and vehicle exhaust. As of 1996, industrial carbon dioxide emissions hit 144.5 million metric tons. The cities of Venezuela produce around 3.6 million tons of solid waste a year. From the years of 1990 to 1995, deforestation has been at an annual rate of 1.1% Efforts to curb deforestation have been put in place. Restrictions on logging are included in these efforts. More recently in 2001, 24 of the country’s mammal species and 22 bird species were added to the endangered species list. 252 types of plants were also endangered. Some specific animals are the red siskin, the giant otter, green sea turtles, and three different species of crocodile. It is predicted that in the time span of 2001 to 2012 Venezuela lost 1.25 million hectares of forest coverage. This an annual rate of 2.1%, beating the previous rate by almost double. The largest forests are in Bolivar and the Amazonas Cattle, ranching plays a large part in the deforestation. Gold mining and logging were also huge factors in the 1980s and 1990s. Logging has since decreased, but gold mining still remains a prevalent issue in the southern region of the country. There have been measures put in place, but loggers and miners have been going in illegally.

Moreover, on the environment, Venezuela has a couple different types of soil. There are alluvial soils and volcanic soils. The soils of Llanos and The Guiana Highlands are pretty much infertile. The more fertile soils are formed by well-drained material from volcanic deposits or alluvial rivers. These alluvial soils are found in the southern parts of the Maracaibo Lowlands, in the northern mountains, and some edges of the Llanos. The Orinoco delta and plains nearby are rich in alluvial soils. Volcanic soils are found in the slopes of northern mountains. However, these soils are usually sabotaged by deforestation, logging, and shifting agriculture. Much of how fertile the soil is depends on the amount of drainage running through that area. The two main drainage systems for Venezuela’s runoff are the Orinoco River and the Tuy River. Collectively, they drain about four-fifths of the country’s surface runoff. The Orinoco makes its journey from its start in the Guiana Highlands, travels northwest, then north, and finally east before ending up in the Orinoco Delta. From here it travels out to the Atlantic Ocean. The only real interior drainage in Venezuela is Lake Valencia. The Caracas Valley is drained by the Tuy River. It runs east to the Caribbean Sea.

Now, as you can probably tell already, Venezuela has many landforms. Being that Venezuela has so many geographic features like the Orinoco River, Angel Falls, the Guiana Highlands, the Maracaibo Lowlands, the Andes Mountains, Lake Guri, Lake Maracaibo, and more it is divided up into several regions. Each region has a different climate than the next. This is what makes these landforms so different. For example, the Guiana Highlands, which are relatively unresearched, form a very tropical climate. It tends to bet hot and humid, very jungle-esque. Located in the Guiana Highlands are the Angel Falls. This is the largest waterfall in the world, at 2,421 feet it is 12 times the height of the Niagara Falls. Along with this Venezuelan water wonder are numerous rivers. Venezuela has over 10,000 rivers, granted they are small. However, the most important river in the country is the Orinoco River. It is one of the largest not only in Venezuela but in the entire continent, falling short to only the Paran and the Amazon. There are three divisions of elevation in the country. There are the lowland plains, the mountains, and the interior forested uplands. The lowland plains’ elevation rises from sea level to 1,650 feet, the mountains soar 16,400 feet above sea level, and the forested uplands are at about 6,550 feet.

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With all these different climates and regions, the country’s ecology and biosphere are also diverse. However, like much of the country, the conservation community is struggling. Venezuela is not being funded by the international conservation community and feels abandoned. However, some conservationists were able to discover a bird thought to be gone. This all started when the economic crisis took hold in 2014. Ileana Herrera, a Venezuelan ecologist, had to flee the country to provide for her son and take care of her sick mother. Venezuela is lacking basic resources such as food and medicine. Conditions got so terrible, some ecologists were only making $3 a month as of 2016. Nanette Anzola, a Venezuelan Ecologist, moved to Canada years ago for an internship at the Ecology Campus Network in Canada. Here she noticed many differences from her homeland, Venezuela, and her new country Canada. She noted how small difference in Canada’s attitude toward environmental care made such a large change. Little actions like recycling, environmentally-friendly grocery bags, and reusable water bottles made all the difference. Differences that she noticed Venezuela was lacking. With so many other issues taking precedence, it seems ecological care has fallen to the shadows. Anzola states, “…in my country gas is cheaper than elsewhere in the world at exactly 3 cents a liter. This translates into everyone driving everywhere. Walking, biking and public transportation are seen as secondary forms of transportation.” Air pollution is a huge problem in Venezuela, especially more recently. Garbage is also hardly ever recycled and burning it is often the first way to get rid of it. For obvious reasons, these are not effective ways of keep our environment thriving.It is so important that we change this fact because Venezuela is so full of unique and beautiful flora and fauna. In the country of Venezuela, there are so many different and exotic examples of flora. The plant life is so diverse there are 21,000+ species of plants in this country alone. Some more well-known examples are the Orchids, the Araguaney Tree, the Moriche Palm Tree, and the Andean Frailejon Plant. There are more than 25,000 species of orchids alone in Venezuela. A common orchid is the flor de mayo orchid. This is also the national flower of the country. The Araguaney and Moriche Palm trees are some prevalent trees found in Venezuela. The Araguaney tree is the national tree of Venezuela and can be found in tropical forests not long after the rainy season. It has bright yellow flowers that appear on its branches and is recognized for its resilience. The Moriche Palm Tree is found in the swamps of the Orinoco Delta. It is also called the “Tree of Life”. It can grow as tall as 35 meters. The fruit that grows from it is edible and it is often eaten fresh or made into juices, jams, or wine. The Andean Lupine Flower and the Andean Frailejon Plant are both natives to Venezuela. They also grow at very high altitudes. Lupine grows in moist areas at about 8,000 to 11,000 ft in the air. The Frailejon Plant can be found all the way up to 13,000 feet in the air. It often grows in barren hills, making its bright yellow petals stand out. Not only is Venezuela full of diverse flora, but it is also full of many types of fauna. It is one of the world’s 17 megadiverse countries. Home to over 351 species of animals, 341 species reptiles, 2,000 marine species, and 1,417 bird species, Venezuela has a wealth of animal life. The ecosystem of the country is comprised of the Andes mountain, the Amazon basin, the Llanos plains, the Orinoco River, and he Caribbean coast. Some examples of the animals found in the country are the Orinoco crocodile, the Scarlet Ibis, the Howler Monkey, the Capybara, Giant Anteater, Giant Otter, the White-bellied Spider Monkey, the Crab-eating Fox, the Sloth, and the Jaguar. The Orinoco Crocodile, true its name, claims the Orinoco River as its habitat. They are highly endangered. They can grow up to 6.6 meters in length though there is not much information on their length as they are so endangered. Males are significantly larger than females. The ibis is well-known for its scarlet color. It lives in tropical climate. The Howler monkey are from the New World monkey group. They are highly social and eat mostly leaves, fruit, and nuts. Capybara, also found in Venezuela, is the largest rodent in the world. The giant anteater, also referred to as ant bearearns its name as they are the largest animal in the Myrmecophagidae family. Also, the largest of their kind is the Giant Otter. In all of the Mustelidae (Weasel) family they are the largest at about 1.7 meters. They prefer freshwater and anywhere from 1-5 pups can be born blind. The white-bellied spider monkey is also an endangered species. They are often found jumping from branch to branch. An omnivorous animal named the Crab-eating fox despite their name also eat lizards, rodents, insects, and crustaceans other than crab. The slow-moving sloth is a staple in the rain forests of Venezuela. Funnily enough, they live around 10 years longer in captivity than in the wild, in the wild, they can live for up to 20 years, and in captivity, 30. Last but surely not least, Venezuela is home to jaguars. They camouflage well and are placed at the top of the food chain.

As well as a large amount of plants and animals, there are many people in the country. Venezuela’s population is the 44th largest in the whole world at 32,704,796 as of 2019. They make up 0.42% of the world’s total population and have a population density of 96 people per square mile. Like most countries, these people are represented by a flag. The existing Venezuelan flag was officially claimed on April 20, 1836. It resembles the one Francisco de Maranda, the Venezuelan liberation leader, used. Each primary color has its own meaning, blue means courage, red represents independence from Spain, and yellow symbolizes wealth. Currently, there are seven stars, but at a time there was an eighth star. Each star signifies a province in Venezuela. The eight stars represented Angostura, which is now Guyana. It was taken off in 1905, but Hugo Chavez desired to bring it back. On many flags, the eighth star is still there. The national coat of arms is placed in the upper left-hand corner when the flag is used by the government. While it was Francisco de Miranda who proposed the red, yellow, and blue flag design. However, about 5 years after he suggested a black, yellow, and red design. Even still, the first design was chosen by the government as the national flag. The coat of arms, used by military personnel and the government, includes and white horse, a white sheaf, a group of tools, weapons, flag, two cornucopias, and laurel and palm branches tied with a ribbon. Although the eighth star was removed it was brought back on March 7, 2006. Along with this, the name in the coat of arms was changed to “República Bolivariana de Venezuela”.

In the República Bolivariana de Venezuela, the capital city is Caracas. It is also a key city in the South American continent. The city is a hotspot for urbanization and city life It is the country’s main outlet of industry, commerce, education, as well as culture. Upon being founded in 1567 and officially named Santiago de Léon de Caracas, the city has grown slowly but surely. In the 1940s it grew exponentially. It holds the Capital District and Caracas itself extends into the State of Miranda. Caracas is one of the largest financial districts in all of Latin America. The full name is Santiago de Léon de Caracas. Unfortunately, Caracas had the highest murder rate per capita until it was surpassed by Los Cabos. Even still, it is only by 0.14 people. 3.3 million people live within the 300 square mile area of land. About 5.3 million people live in Greater Caracas. Greater Caracas includes the capital city and the nearby 11 municipalities. In the capital city, population density is much higher than in the more rural areas of the country. The people of Caracas are referred to as Caraquenians. In Caracas, the population density of Caraquenians is 10,900 people per square mile. Some well-known landmarks in the capital are the Caracas Mosque, The National Pantheon, and the University City of Caracas.

Before Caracas grew so quickly and became the hotspot it is today, it was under Spanish rule. In 1797, a movement of Venezuelan Creoles declared the country a Republic free of Spanish rule. The effort did not go successfully, however, it showed Spain that revolutionary actions were coming. Francisco de Miranda, a renowned military figurehead, tried to land on the coast of Venezuela with some hired soldiers from New York City. The plan was unsuccessful, but 4 years later Gran Columbia called him to rule Junta, a political committee. At this meeting, they wrote up a constitution for the newly established free nation. During the war between Spain and Venezuela, Miranda signed an agreement with Spain to cease the use of firearms and military force. Many revolutionary leaders felt this was a step in the wrong direction. As a result, he was sent to the Spaniards. He died in a Spanish prison in 1816. Three years prior to his death the Junta appointed Simon Bolivar. Bolivar was a Creole born in Caracas. The army that was rivaling Bolivar’s was full of llaneros, however many separated from the opposing army and joined the revolutionary force. Support came from many parts of the world including Britain, Ireland, and Haiti. All of these efforts were not in vain, on December 17, 1819, the Republic of Gran Colombia was established. Simon Bolivar was the president of this recently founded republic. The true end to the fighting between Latin Americans and Spain was when Bolivar’s army defeated the main royalist army and the troops at Puerto Cabello surrendered. Venezuelan troops also helped other regions liberate themselves. Places like Peru were aided by the country. Years passed before the regions began to argue and eventually separated. Venezuela left first in 1829 and Ecuador followed suit. Bolivar unable to keep the region together, died in 1830. Even though Spain was busy fighting off the invasion of Napoleon, they still fought with Venezuela over governing power. The war lasted more than 10 years before the country finally earned the right to govern themselves.

After the long battle for freedom, Venezuela had to form its government. This includes everything from writing up constitution to forming political parties to the separation of powers between branches. The Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela is specifically, a Federal Republic. Their current constitution was established in 1999, replacing the older model from 1961. This 1961 constitution had been standing longer than any other in the country’s history. Along with this, it was the first constitution that was chosen by popular vote. The newer document contained changes to the government structure and role, in addition to more human rights being addressed for the country’s citizens. More recently the country has been going through many issues. The state of politics and the economy are poor and at the most dangerous level. There are several branches to the government including the executive branch, the judicial branch, and the legislative branch. The executive branch includes the Chief of state and the head of government. They are elected every 6 years by plurality vote. The judicial branch is responsible for enforcing justice. Last, the legislative branch has the ability to name the Supreme Tribunal of Justice members. They also examine legislation in relation to national affairs. Venezuela had two main political parties between 1948 and 1998. These two parties were the Christian Democrats and Accion Democratic. The fall of the two parties arose after this time because of the country’s suspicions. The parties, having been involved with corrupt governments, were untrustworthy in the eyes of the public. Presently, the president is also being judged by the eyes of the public. On November 23, 1962, Nicolas Maduro Moros, more commonly known as Nicolas Maduro, was born in Caracas, Venezuela. He ran for president in the April 2013 special election. The election was held to vote for a replacement to the late President Hugo Chavez. Nicolas Maduro went into office in 2013. Prior to being Venezuela’s president, Maduro was the right-hand man to the late, former president Hugo Chavez. Chavez had great faith in Maduro and selected him to be his successor. Before Chavez died he selected Maduro to be prime minister. When he eventually died to cancer, there was an election between Nicolas Maduro and Henrique Capriles. Of course, Maduro prevailed, though it was a close race. Since then the country has been in uproar since he was elected. It is not uncommon to find Venezuelans protesting his rule. Many countries have voiced their opinions on his leadership, especially given recent events. The country is riddled with starvation and people are fleeing in hordes.

Before Venezuela even got to this point, they went through many important dates in their history. Sometime between 1498 and 1499 Christopher Columbus sailed alongside Alonso de Ojeda and landed in Venezuela. At this time it was inhabited by the indigenous peoples of the Carib, Arawak, and Chibcha. It was not until about 22 years later Spain started colonizing the land. Two whole centuries passed before the first rebellion attempt occurred. Although it was not successful, just a few years later in 1810, Venezuelans used Napoleon’s invasion of Spain as an advantage.They declare themselves and joined Gran Colombia. This only lasted about two decades before they left Gran Colombia. After years of living under dictators and military rule, in 1945 a coup overthrew the gov’t. However military prowess struck back in 1948 and overthrew the first elected leader, Pres. Romulo Gallegos. He had only had his eighth month in office.

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Venezuela International Essay: Analysis of the Role of Simon Bolivar. (2022, September 27). Edubirdie. Retrieved October 3, 2023, from
“Venezuela International Essay: Analysis of the Role of Simon Bolivar.” Edubirdie, 27 Sept. 2022,
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