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Oil

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Stop oil extraction in the Amazon

It used to be that people described finding oil on their land as “striking it rich”. But for indigenous people in the Amazon living atop oil reserves is a nightmare. Oil exploration in the region has caused massive deforestation, pumped dangerous toxin into the environment, put anyone who speaks out at risk.

The money at stake for both oil companies and governments is so vast that human rights and environmental destruction are often overlooked. Yet, the indigenous peoples residing on these oil rich lands rarely reap any benefits. Oil extraction is used as an excuse to push indigenous communities off of their ancestral lands, has poisoned thousands, and contributed to increased violence throughout the Amazon Basin.

 

the effects of oil drilling

Chemicals released

Cadmium Mercury PAHs (polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons) Lead Chromate Barite Potassium Chloride Nickel Copper

In the early days of oil production, companies frequently disposed of drilling waste directly into rivers or dug giant pits to dump their sludge. These chemicals poisoned waterways and leached into the surrounding area. Because people like you spoke out this is no  longer legal; but oil drilling continues to destroy our rainforests.

Companies begin by exploring a section of the rainforest for oil. Even if they don’t find oil, just the exploration changes the rainforest. Roads are carved out of the forest to transport massive equipment, and areas are cleared in order to make way for drilling and oil camps. These newly cleared areas attract illegal loggers, land traffickers and ranchers; destroying previously inaccessible forests.

If oil is found, dangerous chemicals are used to create the oil wells and to move the oil out of the well. Disposing of this waste is dangerous and complicated. Too many oil companies have been found cutting corners or ignoring the laws all together.

Even the most responsible companies can have pipelines and wells which leak. Oil spills are frequent, and heavy metals are occasionally spewed into the air throughout the extraction process.

Did you know it took almost 35 years of Indigenous protests for the Peruvian State to acknowledge that it should try to clean rivers polluted by oil drilling?
Today, Indigenous communities throughout the Amazon continue to insist their countries respect the right of prior consultation before any oil concessions are given out.

These gas flares are a painful reminder
of the consequences of oil drilling in Ecuador.

Oil spills cannot completely avoided.

effects of OIL DRILLING

  • Heavy metals like lead contaminate water and air—putting Indigenous communities at risk.
  • Skin rashes, chronic headaches, fainting spells, vomiting, chronic diarrhea, headaches are common in communities near oil extraction sites.
  • Long term effects include lung disease, liver and kidney damage, birth defects, brain damage, and miscarriages.

effects of OIL DRILLING

  • Heavy metals like lead contaminate water and air—putting Indigenous communities at risk.
  • Skin rashes, chronic headaches, fainting spells, vomiting, chronic diarrhea, headaches are common in communities near oil extraction sites.
  • Long term effects include lung disease, liver and kidney damage, birth defects, brain damage, and miscarriages..

effects of OIL DRILLING

  • Drilling causes deforestation as trees are felled to make roads, allow for oil rigs, and make room for camps.
  • Oil extraction adds toxic chemicals into the rainforest— especially in remote areas where there is frequently is little oversight.
  • More than 20 billion gallons of toxic drilling sludge and 17 million gallons of oil have spilled into Ecuador’s Eastern Amazon region.
  • Increased oil extraction brings more CO2 into our atmosphere making the rainforests more vulnerable to drought and wildfires.

Ready to change this picture?

1 Sign the Chevron, Clean it Up! Petition
2 Become a Rainforest Defender
3 Find other Ways to Make a Difference
Take Action

Just $5 saves an acre of Rainforest!

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