After Ecuador issued a permit to drill for oil in Yasuni National Park in May, there’s already been one of its largest oil spills.
On July 2, state-owned oil company Petroamazonas spilled
660,000 gallons of oil into the Amazon, contaminating the Aguarico and Parahuaico rivers where the indigenous Cofan, Secoya, Kichwa and Shuar communities drink, bathe, and fish, reports Amazon Watch.
These are some of the same communities that still suffer from Chevron’s toxic legacy of contamination there – with a 20-year lawsuit remaining unresolved.
The crude has reached Cuyabeno Wildlife Reserve and three weeks later, no action has been taken by the environmental ministry:
So much for careful oversight and operations in one of the most
biologically diverse and culturally sensitive places on Earth.
Read our article, Ecuador Issues Permit to Drill in Yasuni National Park.
Please sign this message asking Environmental Minister Tapia to revoke Petroamazonas’ license to drill in the Amazon and to make sure it remediates the area and compensates affected communities.
Dear Minister Tapia,
We – as global citizens concerned about the future of the
Amazon and indigenous rights – write to you to express our alarm over Petroamazonas’ July 2 oil spill.
We are concerned that your ministry has not condemned the spill nor forced Petroamazonas to compensate the communities. We
are worried that unless you use your executive power to prohibit Petroamazonas from extending its operations into Yasuní and the south central Amazon, disasters like this will become increasingly commonplace.
Most disturbingly, while your office reports an oil spill
nearly every week, you continue to greenlight Petroamazonas’ plans to expand its drilling to the most biologically diverse and culturally fragile parts of the Amazon. We call upon you to revoke Petroamazonas’ licenses in Yasuní (blocks 31 and 43) and to deny its requests to operate in the south central Amazon (blocks 79, 83, 29, and 28).