Ecuador Delays 11th Oil Round Deadline

Ecuador Delays 11th Oil Round Deadline

#AmazonNot4Sale

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In a bit of an Earth Day reprieve, Ecuador has extended the deadline for companies to offer bids for the 16 oil blocks up for sale in the country's southeastern Amazon rainforests. According to an article in the Wall Street Journal, the Ministry of Non Renewable Resources pushed the date for interested companies to submit bids from May 30 to July 16, stating that the extension would give companies more time to "review the geology of the oil blocks and to complete legal paperwork necessary."

Sounds to us like no one is interested in Ecuador's dirty oil!

We were delighted to learn all this just as we launched our debut social media Earth Day of action resulting in thousands of Tweets to Ecuadorian President Correa. Your mad tweeting, petition signing and history of action matters! Thank you.

The government and potentially interested companies have been under immense pressure since the tender was announced in Quito last November. Ecuador then set out on a roadshow peddling the oil auction around the globe. Where they went, so did we! Houston, Paris, Beijing, Calgary. We infiltrated briefings with investors and press. We got thrown out of such meetings, but not without asking tough questions around just why the government has so blatantly failed to properly consult indigenous peoples as required by international rights standards. We brought up indigenous leaders to tell their stories, took over local and international airwaves and TV, and showed investors that they'd be buying a real problem. And they would be: The Ecuadorian government is attempting to auction off the titled indigenous lands of seven nationalities and some of the last, most pristine old growth Amazon rainforest left in the country.

But all signs are pointing to problems for the government's plans. The round was originally set to include 21 oil blocks, a staggering ten million acres. But due to on-the-ground resistance from indigenous groups and international pressure, the government removed five of the most controversial blocks. Now it seems the remaining 16 blocks aren't such a good bet for the chopping block either, and likely bidders are catching on. Previous administrations have tried twice before to auction these blocks but were forced to scrap them due to resistance and lack of interest from the oil industry. It seems like history may repeat itself, but your action is making the difference!

Let's turn it up! Please keep up the pressure and share this action. The Amazon is NOT for sale!

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