Eye on the Amazon: The Official Blog of Amazon Watch
November 14, 2013
Join the worldwide chorus calling for justice by urging Brazil's Supreme Court to rule on lawsuits against the Belo Monte Dam!
November 12, 2013 | Paul Paz y Miño
It's Time to Fire Chevron's CEO!
Tell the Chevron board of directors to fire CEO John Watson. Since he took over, the company's bad behavior has only gotten worse.
If you had any doubts as to the assertions that this is nothing but a show trial then today would have blown them all away. Time and again Judge Kaplan stood up and continued questioning witnesses after Chevron's pack of hyenas had presumably finished. With one exception, every objection by Gibson Dunn was sustained and every one by the Ecuadorians' legal team overruled.
November 8, 2013 | Paul Paz y Miño
Ask BSR to explain how they could invite Vale – the "worst corporation in the world" – to present at their conference via Twitter.
In the face of growing corporate power, engaging with corporations to create a climate of social responsibility has never been more critical. Networks such as Business for Social Responsibility (BSR) can play an important role in how civil society relates to and educates corporations to agree on norms and practices that could actually help create a more sustainable future. But when the exchange is used to help corporations merely polish their image without truly participating in good faith, it can do more harm than good. Groups like BSR should be especially careful about associating and promoting certain corporate actors. Indeed, this could undermine their entire mission.
This week in San Francisco, BSR severely tarnished its image in such a manner. On Thursday the Brazilian mining company Vale was invited to present its perspective on a panel entitled, "Voices of Rights Holders in the Extractives Industry." This is like inviting the CIA to a panel on the rights of victims of torture. Last year Vale won dubious distinction as the 2012 Public Eye Award Winner – a prize given annually to the worst corporation in the world. Vale is the second largest iron-ore mining company on the planet and the largest private shareholder in the consortium that is building the disastrous Belo Monte dam in the heart of the Brazilian Amazon.
November 7, 2013
FREE tickets here using this code: AMAZONWATCHGF13
Amazon Watch is honored to be an NGO partner of the Green Festival in San Francisco this weekend, November 9-10, 2013 at the SF Concourse Exhibition Center, 635 8th Street (at Brannan). We invite you to spend the weekend with us for free.
The Green Festival is the nation's premier sustainability event hosting leaders in the social justice and environmental community including Amy Goodman, John Trudell, and John Perkins. It also features a sustainable beer and wine garden, live cooking demos featuring delicious beverages and cuisine, a yoga pavilion and a dedicated kids' area for learning about easy and fun ways to incorporate green at a young age, plus the nation's largest and most diverse Green Marketplace, featuring hundreds of eco-friendly businesses, educational institutions and nonprofit organizations, including Amazon Watch.
Stop by our booth (#568 near back entrance) and don't miss Amazon Watch Program Director, Leila Salazar-López, who will be speaking alongside other powerful women and community leaders on two Saturday panels.
November 7, 2013 | Adam Zuckerman
Last week a delegation of indigenous leaders traveled from the Ecuadorian Amazon to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights in Washington, DC to help advise the Ecuadorian government on how to properly consult indigenous peoples about projects that affect their territory and their way of life.
Unfortunately, the government announced at the last moment that it would not be attending the hearing and Ecuador's President Correa tweeted that the indigenous leaders' claims were "nonsense," part of a larger trend in which Ecuador has threatened to leave the human rights body.
However, for indigenous leaders defending the Amazon, the government's failure to properly consult them is anything but "nonsense." The leaders were particularly concerned about the 11th Round, the government's attempt to auction off the oil rights of eight million acres of Ecuador's still-pristine southeastern Amazon. The region is Ecuador's last remaining tract of virgin rainforest and is home to seven indigenous nationalities: the Achuar, Shuar, Kichwa, Zápara, Waorani, Shiwiar and Andoa. The indigenous nationalities have mobilized against the round, and have issued multiple declarations of opposition.