Hello from Los Angeles!
I’ve been in LA for the past few days supporting Amazon Watch, a great long-time organizational ally of RAN, as they demand that Occidental Petroleum clean up the destruction that they’ve left in the Peruvian Amazon.
Yesterday (Wednesday) Amazon Watch, along with actress Daryl Hannah, and a representative of the Achuar people from Peru, demonstrated outside of OXY’s headquarters building in Westwood. We all dressed in haz-mat suits and “cleaned up” the front of OXY’s building, hoping that they will take inspiration, and clean up the billions of barrels of toxic waste that they dumped in the Peruvian Amazon.
Oxy dumped nine billion barrels of toxic wastewater into virgin tropical rainforest belonging to the Indigenous Achuar people when it drilled for oil in Peru from 1971 to 2000. The company then fled the country, leaving local communities with lead and cadmium poisoning and living in a devastated environment.
OXY’s destruction of the Achular’s homeland in the Peruvian Amazon has left the water undrinkable, and fish filled with oil because of the incredible extent of the pollution. I have been honored to spend just a few days with the Achular people from Peru, as well as the wonderful people from Amazon Watch who are fighting for justice for Indigenous people throughout South America. Amazon Watch’s campaign to get OXY to clean up their mess in Peru is critical to the survival of the Achular people and their culture.
Tomorrow (Friday, May 2) is OXY’s annual shareholder meeting, and Amazon Watch will be there to demand that OXY clean up and pay up for the mess they left in Achuar territory. A rally outside the meeting starts at 9am and will continue until 12 noon at the Farimont Miramar Hotel in Santa Monica – 101 Wilshire Blvd. If you live in the LA area, come out! We’ll have haz-mat suits and mops for everyone to wear so we can continue to show OXY how to clean up after themselves – contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.