Statement: Ecuador Leaving OPEC Signals Dangerous Oil Expansion

Amazon Watch

For more information, contact:

Kevin Koenig at +1.415.726.4607 or kevin@amazonwatch.org
Rania Batrice at+1.510.394.2041 or rania@amazonwatch.org


Ecuador has announced it plans to leave OPEC by 2020 because it does not wish to abide by production restrictions on crude oil. The consequences of this extraction for the indigenous peoples living in the Ecuadorian Amazon cannot be overstated.

In response to Ecuador's announcement, Kevin Koenig, Climate and Energy Director for Amazon Watch, had the following statement:

"Ecuador's decision to leave OPEC lays bare its intentions to expand production in its Amazonian oil fields, which lie underneath lands titled to indigenous peoples opposed to extraction and are some of the most biologically diverse places on the planet.

"At a time when we are witnessing the Brazilian Amazon burn to the ground, we can't lose the western Amazon to new oil extraction in pursuit of fossil fuels that the world can ill afford to burn and the extraction of which is incompatible with the Paris Agreement.

"New oil production in Ecuador would come from roadless, intact Amazon rainforest that home to dozens of indigenous nationalities which adamantly oppose oil extraction, including indigenous peoples living in voluntary isolation."

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