Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Whatever it takes to avoid taking responsibility …

With its enormous profits and unlimited number of paid consultants, Chevron is lobbying Congress and the Office of the US Trade Representative to impose trade sanctions on Ecuador hoping it will halt the lawsuit for oil contamination in the Ecuadorian rainforest. The oil giant claims the 1995 remediation agreement between Texaco and the government of Ecuador releases Texaco from any liability. Chevron is trying to punish Ecuadorian government for supposedly not abiding by the agreement. But there are a few facts Chevron does not mention.

This remediation agreement released Texaco of any government liability but not individual people’s right to sue. The Ecuadorian indigenous groups filed this lawsuit in 1993 two years before the remediation agreement was signed.

Most importantly, the agreement is invalid as Texaco never cleaned up the pits as the agreement required. Tests taken during the trial show that almost all of the oil sites that Texaco had supposedly cleaned up still show illegal levels of toxins. Many of them are as bad as the ones Texaco did not remediate. Dumping dirt on top of the waste pits does not count as a cleanup and does not take the problem away.

Interestingly, two Chevron lawyers and several former Ecuadorian officials have been indicted by the Ecuadorian government for lying about the results of Texaco’s remediation. So not only is the agreement not valid, but it also seems to have been a hoax from the very beginning.

Chevron is getting tangled up in its own web of lies!

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