Antoine Bonsorte photography
Ecological awareness comes from taking responsability.
Researchers and scientists have warned us from future desastrous natural catastrophies
caused by pollution, forest cutting and its consequential global warming
Amazon Watch is based in California and is one of the most
active organizations protecting our world.
Amazon Watch works to defend the environment and
rights of the indigenous peoples of the Amazon basin.
Join Amazon Watch and get more information about the latest
“Oil Resistance in the Heart of the World”
Indigenous Achuar Leaders in Los Angeles to Demand:
Oxy Clean Up the Peruvian Amazon!
MAY 3, 2007
A Special Evening with Achuar leaders from Peru
7:00 pm reception, Program 7:30 pm
Bonsorte Design Studio
2401 Lincoln Blvd. Santa Monica, CA
(between Pico and Ocean Park)
Admission is free. Please RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org
The approximately 11,000 Achuar who live in the northern Peruvian rainforest are some of the most traditional indigenous peoples of the Amazon basin. Their ancestral lands, which they have inhabited since beforethe arrival of Europeans, are one of the last refuges for countless species of flora and fauna found nowhere else on earth. To reach this region from the capital city of Lima can take up to a week by canoe and bus. Even travel on foot between villages can take days.
In the early 1970s, petroleum was discovered in the Rio Corrientes river basin, the traditional territory of the Achuar, Quichua and Urarina indigenous peoples.
Occidental Petroleum, the first foreign oil company to operate in Peru, was given the initial drilling concession (known as Block 1AB), which included over one million acres of pristine rainforest. For over 30 years, Oxy dumped an average of 850,000 barrels per day of toxic oil byproducts from the extraction process directly into rivers and streams used by local indigenous peoples for drinking, bathing, washing, and fishing approximately 9 billion barrels in 30 years of operation.
As a result of three decades of dumping, the Achuar have unsafe and illegal concentrations of a range of toxins in their bodies, including lead and cadmium. It has also poisoned local waterways to the point where the fish and game populations on which the Achuar depend for survival are no longer fit for human consumption.
Despite Oxy’s announcement in December 2006 to withdraw all of its Peru operations, Achuar communities have been left with vast areas of the rainforest that require major remediation from 35 years of negligent oil extraction. On May 3, Earthrights International and Amazon Watch will be releasing the findings of an investigative mission to this region to document the social and environmental impacts of three decades of negligent petroleum production activities on five indigenous Achuar communities. Oxy must take the lead and definitively tackle its historic legacy of toxic contamination.
HELP US HOLD OXY ACCOUNTABLE FOR ITS TOXIC OIL LEGACY IN PERU
For more information, to RSVP or to volunteer,
please contact 310-456-9158 or
Earth Rights International
Bonsorte Design Studio
MAY 4, 2007
Press conference and Rally @ Oxy’s Annual
Outside Fairmont Miramar Hotel
101 Wilshire Blvd., Santa Monica, CA
(corner of Ocean Avenue)
P.O. Box 2421 Malibu, CA 90265
Antoine Bonsorte photography
Tomas Maynas, an amazing Achuar spiritual elders whose vision
inspired the Achuar people's victorious resistance, was part of the delegation.
LA TIMES May 5th 2007
Protesters target Occidental
A lawsuit is threatened over oil operations in the Amazon basin.
By Elizabeth Douglass, Times Staff Writer
May 5, 2007
Shareholders of Occidental Petroleum Corp. gathered Friday to hear details behind another great year in the oil business. But the celebratory mood didn't last.
A group from Peru and a handful of celebrities took to the microphones during Occidental's annual meeting to accuse the oil company of causing and then ignoring pervasive health and environmental problems in a remote region of the Amazon where Occidental drilled for 30 years.
The group, which has met with Occidental repeatedly over the years, set a Monday deadline for a response from the oil company. After that, the Peruvians will file a lawsuit against Occidental, said Marco Simons, legal director for EarthRights International.
Tomas Maynas Carijano, identified as a spiritual elder for the Achuar people of northeastern Peru, provided a sharp contrast to the well-heeled investors. Adorned with traditional seed necklaces and a headdress made from red and yellow toucan feathers, he spoke for several minutes in his native language, and actress Daryl Hannah read his translated comments.
"We are dying because of the contamination you caused in our lands," Carijano said, gesturing toward Chief Executive Ray Irani. "We cannot eat the fish; we cannot drink the water. It's all toxic. You, Oxy, need to clean up the mess you left."
Occidental, which drew oil from the Corrientes River region in Peru starting in the 1970s, sold the operations to Argentine oil company Pluspetrol in 1999. The company still owns drilling rights to 6.3 million acres in the country blocks that it tried to sell late last year in a deal that later collapsed.
"We respect their right to take legal action," said Richard Kline, spokesman for the Westwood-based company. "However, we're confident that any impartial review of the facts will show that we operated in an environmentally sound and sensitive manner, in compliance with the law."
Groups supporting the Achuar released a report this week that they said lends credibility to their claims. After hearing from several speakers, Irani said, "We want to meet and get the facts from you."