Amazon Defense Coalition: Court Filing: Chevron’s Own Audits Prove Company Lied About Massive Pollution in Ecuador by EON


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									Amazon Defense Coalition: Court Filing:
Chevron’s Own Audits Prove Company Lied
About Massive Pollution in Ecuador
Evidence of Chevron’s “Stunning Hypocrisy” and Lies to U.S. Federal Courts

August 31, 2010 08:32 AM Eastern Daylight Time  

NEW YORK--(EON: Enhanced Online News)--A U.S. Federal Court has been presented with two separate
audits conducted at Chevron’s request that show “clear and convincing evidence” that the oil giant knowingly
dumped billions of gallons of toxic waste directly into the Amazon and subsequently lied to cover it up, according to
a legal brief by the 30,000 Ecuadorian rainforest residents suing the company for the illegal dumping.

The two separate audits, commissioned by Chevron’s predecessor company Texaco as it was wrapping up
operations in Ecuador from 1990-92, found that the oil contamination “require[d] remediation at all production
facilities.” The audits also demonstrate deliberate contamination by Texaco, noting that the company failed to protect
surface water quality and intentionally dumped untreated toxic waste directly into the streams and rivers of the jungle.

The findings of the audits – presented for the first time in a U.S. federal court as part of a battle over various
discovery requests related to the Ecuador litigation – stand in stark contrast to Chevron´s numerous sworn 
statements that there is “no evidence that Chevron is responsible for any environmental damage” in Ecuador, made in
multiple filings in recent weeks in several different federal courts.

Chevron’s public denials of damage to the region given the extraordinary findings in its audits are “shocking and
cynical,” according to Ilann Maazel, an attorney for the Amazon residents. “These audits definitively prove that
Chevron is guilty of contaminating Ecuador´s rainforest and that the company is now shamelessly lying about that 
undisputed fact to U.S. courts,” he said.

“It is incredible that Chevron lawyers make sworn statements that there is no damage in the region even while their
own audits unequivocally state the exact opposite,” said Maazel. “Chevron has consistently and intentionally made
such false statements to federal judges in a cynical attempt to hide the extent of the contamination caused by its

Some of the shocking findings of the audits, which were conducted by two Chevron sub-contractors and paid for by
the company, are:

    l   “All twenty-two production stations are currently, or have at some time, discharged oily produced water to
        the environment and flared excess gas. The stations have produced a total of approximately 1.4 billion barrels
        of oil, 250 million cubic feet of gas and 375 million barrels of produced water during the period 1964 to
    l   “The audit identified hydrocarbon contamination requiring remediation at all production facilities and a majority
        of the drill sites.” 
    l   “Produced water (which contains carcinogens and toxic heavy metals) is being discharged to the environment
        in all cases.” 
    l   “Produced waste is then passed through a series of open, unlined pits. The remaining oil emulsion and
        produced water is discharged into a local creek or river or in some instances directly into the
        jungle...Produced water has historically not been tested prior to disposal…” 
    l   “Contamination of soil and water was observed at well sites, production stations and along roadways,
        flowlines and secondary pipelines.” 
    l   “Workover, completion wastes, salt solutions and oil/water emulsions have historically been disposed of into
        well site pits. … Little maintenance has reportedly been done on any of the pits at the well sites.” 
    l   “[Texaco’s] operation included the intentional burning of crude oil from spills and contained in pits. This
        operation usually created large amounts of black smoke and soot that can potentially impair the environment
        and human health.” 

Both audits were relied upon by a court-ordered damages assessment that found that Chevron could be responsible
for up to $27.3 billion in environmental damages and remediation costs. Chevron´s lawyers have called the report 
“scientifically bankrupt” but thus far have refused to comment on their own audits, which were conducted in the early
1990s as the company was winding down its operations in Ecuador.

The audits were conducted by HBT Agra and Fugro McClelland, two Chevron sub-contractors. They are part of
the evidence in the Ecuador trial.

Chevron, through its predecessor company Texaco, operated in Ecuador from 1964-1990. The lawsuit, originally
filed by 30,000 Ecuadorians in New York in 1993, was transferred to Ecuador at Chevron’s request. Since the trial
began in Ecuador, more than 64,000 scientific sampling results and a 200,000-page trial record, has created a
mountain of evidence demonstrating Chevron’s responsibility for the environmental devastation in the region, said

for Amazon Defense Coalition
Karen Hinton, 703-798-3109


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