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Please Call on ChevronTexaco to Address the Human Rights of Amazon Communities

September 12, 2010
by

From Amnesty International
Please send automatic letter HERE

BACKGROUND

For over four decades, Indigenous communities have witnessed multinational oil companies cut through their ancestral lands in search of the country’s vast petroleum resources.

According to the report ”Amazon Crude” by Judith Kimerling, from 1972 until it left Ecuador in 1992, Texaco intentionally dumped more than 19 billion gallons of toxic wastewaters into the region and was responsible for 16.8 million gallons of crude oil spilling from the main pipeline into the forest.

The report alleges that these actions contaminated both the soil and the groundwater of the communities in the area and will continue to threaten the economic and cultural bases of Indigenous peoples’ survival.

Send a message to the Board of Directors of ChevronTexaco that the company must take responsibility for its actions.

MESSAGE TEXT

I am writing to you to express my concern over the ongoing claims of human rights violations resulting from Texaco’s operations in Ecuador.

As you know, between 1972 and 1992, Texaco and Petroecuador extracted over 1.4 billion barrels of oil from the Ecuadorian Amazon. As operating partner, Texaco designed, built and managed all exploration, extraction and transportation facilities. During this time, an estimated 19 million gallons of oil were spilled from the trans-Ecuadorian pipeline, almost double the amount of the Exxon Valdez disaster in Alaska. Texaco also systematically dumped an estimated 18.5 billion gallons of toxic wastewaters into open, unlined pits, waterways and wetlands. By comparison, it was standard, safer practice in the U.S. to re-inject such waters into the ground. In 1998, Texaco conducted a limited cleanup through an agreement with the Ecuadorian government, but its effectiveness is being challenged. Meanwhile, several medical studies relate the devastating health impacts that this widespread pollution has had on the communities living near the areas operated by Texaco.

When Chevron merged with Texaco in 2001, the new company became accountable for Texaco’s liabilities. Shareholders have asked you to report on new initiatives by management to address the health and environmental concerns of the communities affected by oil-related contamination in the area where Texaco operated in Ecuador. As a Board Member, you can take the necessary steps to ensure that the company undertakes such a report.

I urge you to take a personal interest in this case to restore the health and environment of the communities in the Ecuadorian Amazon and ensure that this disgraceful chapter in the history of your company never repeats itself.

Please keep me informed of your endeavors in the matter.

HARD COPY

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