Monday, May 23, 2011

Amazon Watch and RAN Demand Justice from Chevron, Hundreds of Feet in the Air

Daring activists from Amazon Watch and Rainforest Action Network rappelled from the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge in the San Francisco Bay Area this morning to hang a 50-foot banner demanding justice for Chevron's crimes in the Ecuadorian Amazon. The banner, which reads "Chevron Guilty: Clean Up the Amazon", brings attention to the recent Ecuadorian court ruling that found Chevron guilty of its contamination and liable for up to $18 billion.

Chevron has refused to pay up and remediate in the Amazon, despite global pressure from NGOs, investors, and concerned citizens. The banner, hung nearby to both Chevron's Global Headquarters in San Ramon and its heavily polluting refinery in Richmond, raises awareness for the case just days before Chevron's annual shareholders' meeting this Wednesday.

Also in time for the meeting, a delegation of Ecuadorian indigenous and campesino leaders have arrived in the Bay Area after visits to New York and Washington D.C., to demand on behalf of the thousands of victims in the Amazon that Chevron take responsibility for its actions and abide by its legal obligation to repair the toxic damage that has caused a massive public health crisis affecting thousands of people.

Today's display of direct action demonstrates that Chevron will continue to be pressured until it fulfills its legal duty to the Amazon. The Ecuadorian victims are incredibly courageous people who have been fighting tirelessly for two decades to see justice served, and neither they nor their partners at Amazon Watch will rest until Chevron faces up to its responsibility and rights the wrongs it committed in the Amazon.

– Alex

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