THE AMERICAN OIL giant Texaco, which was acquired by Chevron in 2001, dumped some 16 billion tons of oil and toxic waste in the Amazon rainforest as a cost-saving measure between 1964 and 1992. That’s 80 times the amount of oil spilled in the 2010 British Petroleum Gulf of Mexico oil disaster.
An attempt was made to hide the dumping by covering nearly 1,000 oil pits with vegetation. People eventually built homes over some of the pits, and began coming down with mysterious illnesses.
In the Ecuadorean Amazon, the most biodiverse area of the world, the energy titan deliberately poisoned 5 million acres of pristine habitat and subjected tens of thousands of indigenous peoples to destruction of their health and culture.
In Part 1 of ‘Chevron vs. the Amazon,’ Abby Martin takes The Empire Files inside Chevron Texaco’s Amazon killzone to see the areas deemed “remediated” by Chevron, and spoke with the people living in the aftermath.