Eye on the Amazon

Fight Oil with Water: Chevron's Embarrassment in Ecuador

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Every day Chevron tries desperately to greenwash its image. "We Agree" and "Will You Join Us" are perfect examples of empty gestures aimed at making Chevron appear the "good" oil company. The reality is, millions of dollars blown on ad campaigns and PR firms like Sam Singer in San Francisco do nothing to alleviate environmental damage and human suffering caused by their operations. Chevron even convinced Business and Social Responsibility to feature the company as a leader for "community engagement".

Shame on Chevron. Actions speak louder than words and it's incumbent upon the global community to take action where Chevron refuses to. Today a community-led initiative – ClearWater – is providing clean drinking water to tens of thousands of Ecuadorians left with nothing but Chevron's toxic contamination.

ClearWater is an example of true humanitarian support to alleviate suffering caused by "big oil" – by Chevron.

This initiative is yet another example of how Chevron is losing its fight to escape blatant responsibility for its devastation of the Ecuadorian Amazon. The spotlight has gone even further mainstream and individuals are standing up, pulling money from their own pockets and saying: "Chevron doesn't care if these communities die, but we do."

Passionate defenders of the environment, human rights, the rainforest, indigenous communities and champions of corporate accountability have known that Chevron's actions in Ecuador make it the biggest corporate criminal in history and that the campaign for justice in Ecuador is a critical battle for the entire planet. Support for ClearWater brings a new community into that fold. Humanitarian aid, implemented with direct community involvement, meets immediate relief needs on the ground. It also highlights a painful truth for Chevron: their image is of a company so out of touch and so entrenched that they are willing to let thousands suffer and die while others come to the aid of their victims.

Amazon Watch has accompanied the communities in Ecuador for over a decade as they continue their precedent-setting campaign for justice in Ecuador. We are thrilled to support ClearWater and inspired by the growth of the movement on behalf of Ecuadorians in their epic battle against Chevron. The second largest oil company in the United States just shrunk a bit more today next to the growing global community that has had enough of Chevron's lack of action.

Follow Paul on Twitter: @paulpaz

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