Thursday, October 18, 2012

Amazon Farmers Seize Chevron Assets or Life Is Not Always Black and Green

Amazon Farmers Seize Chevron Assets A reversal of fortune for some multinational oil companies, as Latin American and African countries attempt to hold them accountable for environmental hazards. I was first exposed to the type of environmental degradation taking place in these countries (and our own) in 2008 when I read the eye-opening book, "Building the Green Economy, Success Stories from the Grass Roots", by Kevin Danaher, Shannon Biggs and Jason Mark. I was truly shocked and dismayed by what I read, yet encouraged by the tenacity of activists fighting to preserve their land and their health.The pictures in this post are from a report I found on the tropical rainforests of Ecuador and the stories of inhumanity are just as shocking as my readings in 2008. While I'm sure that Ecuadorians were thrilled with the prospect of jobs and a boon to their economies when these drills and pipelines arrived, I don't think they could have ever imagined the long term costs to be paid with lives and communities that will be impacted for generations. So the debate continues in the United States today, what is the priority - a flush of cash and wealth to support struggling and economically dying communities now or making some temporary or permanent sacrifices of economic gain for long term sustainability of the community? As economic options become increasingly limited for today's citizens, in this knowledge based and global economy, it's difficult to not feel compelled to go for the precious gold ring. Kind of not unlike many of the high risk and literally life threatening choices folks in poor communities have to make everyday. Life is gray folks, not always black, not always white, not always green.


No comments: