Streams

Chevron and Ecuador

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Humberto Piaguaje, leader of the Secoya people of the Ecuadorian Amazon, along with Mitch Anderson, Corporate Campaigns Director at Amazon Watch, talk about the Aguinda v. Chevron lawsuit and what Ecuadorian and U.S. judges have ruled about Chevron's involvement in clean-up efforts in the Ecuadorian Amazon.

Guests:

Mitch Anderson and Humberto Piaguaje

Comments [9]

Mike from Inwood

Judy ~

Good point! Whether it was the Ecuadorian state-owned oil company or Texaco (now owned by Chevron) who is ultimately responsible, the people who live in the area are powerless and have no control over their own lives.

What I did not understand when I saw CRUDE was why the people stayed on the contaminated land and drank the water for years after they knew of ite devastating health effects.

To anyone tempted to comment without seeing the film, please don't suggest they had no where else to go; the effects on their health were so devastating that it would be better to be a homeless beggar on any South American city street than endure the contamination.

May. 18 2011 01:37 AM
tom from Brooklyn

If Texaco (a foreign corporation) came in and extracted resources (from their sovereign land, and under the auspices of a previous, wildly right wing regime), and then whomever came in after and bought the mess and continued to exploit and toxify the environment, is it not only just that those whomever is responsible should remediate and make things right. If the Ecuadorian government owes something to these people, and I suppose it does, it will make at least a gesture towards repayment and remediation. Chevron is denying all implication, which is totally disgusting. There is no other way to see this. The damage done to these people and to the environment is ridiculous. And everyone responsible needs to make it right. We can quibble about Texaco/petro-ecuador/chevron---they are all responsible. However, as is the case in so many similar situations, it is the foreign corporation who sets up shop, brutalizes the indigenous population, and then moves on, that is immune. The profitability of the industry is not the question. It's the evil involved in putting it into motion (cf. American history). The time has come to say fair's fair.

May. 18 2011 01:28 AM
tom from Brooklyn

If Texaco (a foreign corporation) came in and extracted resources (from their sovereign land, and under the auspices of a previous, wildly right wing regime), and then whomever came in after and bought the mess and continued to exploit and toxify the environment, is it not only just that those whomever is responsible should remediate and make things right. If the Ecuadorian government owes something to these people, and I suppose it does, it will make at least a gesture towards repayment and remediation. Chevron is denying all implication, which is totally disgusting. There is no other way to see this. The damage done to these people and to the environment is ridiculous. And everyone responsible needs to make it right. We can quibble about Texaco/petro-ecuador/chevron---they are all responsible. However, as is the case in so many similar situations, it is the foreign corporation who sets up shop, brutalizes the indigenous population, and then moves on, that is immune. The profitability of the industry is not the question. It's the evil involved in putting it into motion (cf. American history). The time has come to say fair's fair.

May. 18 2011 01:28 AM
Lenin vizuete from NJ

Can't does not work. As far as I know from family that worked for Texaco they did not do a full clean up, then the Ecuadorian national company took over (Petro Ecuador) and made it worse. Both are to blame I think.

May. 17 2011 06:59 PM
Judy

See "Crude". Imagine if this happened in the United States. Look at the publicity and, rightly so, the outrage over BP in the Gulf. Where is the outrage for these victims?

This has been so underreported and far more devastating. These people had no power, no voice. It is very sad.

May. 17 2011 05:20 PM
Mike from Inwood

There was a documentary made regarding this called "CRUDE". While the filmmaker clearly sides with the Ecuadorian government, he at least presents both sides. I recommend seeing it before jumping on Chevron.

May. 17 2011 11:49 AM
Mike from Inwood/Tribeca

I think Brian failed to do his homework. Texaco left Ecuador when the Ecuadorian government nationalized the country's oil. The Ecuadorian government ran the oil operation for I believe 18 years. After mismanaging the operation, they sold to Chevron. The question is whether the Ecuadorian government messed up the rainforest or whether Texaco's mess was never cleaned up.

May. 17 2011 11:43 AM
Jack in the Bronx from South Bronx

What about precedents from this case? Monsanto is in Olancho Honduras polluting farms with hybridized GM seed. Will farmers sue Monsanto for making them dependent on annual purchases of seed that only Monsanto can provide?

May. 17 2011 11:35 AM
Truth & Beauty from Brooklyn

I think Chevron should undertake to clean up the mess.

For one thing, no company that goes into a sovereign country to mine its resources should be allowed to make a mess there, cause toxic situations for the indigineous peoples and flora and fauna. You pay for what you take and you leave the land pristine.

In addition, Chevron is throwing good money after bad litigating this and the only people who are benefitting at all are the lawyers. Spend the money on the clean-up and let the lawyers find other victims to leech.

May. 17 2011 11:35 AM

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