This morning, some of the most powerful global voices calling for environmental justice gathered in our office for a press conference to tell the world why they’re attending Chevron’s shareholder meeting tomorrow in San Ramon.
Labor and community leaders from Brazil, Ecuador, Nigeria, Angola, California and Texas revealed the true cost of Chevron’s operations in the places where they live. People including: Emem Okon of the Kebetkache Women Development & Resource Centre
all the way here from Nigeria; João Antonio de Moraes, National Coordinator of Brazil’s largest oil workers union, the United Federation of Oil Workers (FUP)
; Robinson Yumbo and Luz Trinidad Andrea Cusangua here from Ecuador; Cristóvão Luemba, a Rádio Ecclesia
correspondent, from Cabinda, Angola; Nile Malloy from Communities for a Better Environment
; and others.
As João Antonio de Moraes told reporters: “Tomorrow, I join with the United Steelworkers to call on Chevron to increase the safety of its oil rigs and refineries the world-over and to tell Chevron that its outrageous neglect for local communities and the environment from Brazil to Ecuador, from Nigeria to California, will not go unanswered.”
He was echoed by Cristóvão Luemba: "Chevron is killing people for profit. Chevron's constant offshore oil spills have decimated fisheries and compromised the livelihoods and subsistence of coastal communities. Its constant acts of impunity are supported by an authoritarian regime that cares more about oil revenues than the lives of its people."
Chevron is a global giant but it is also a Bay Area company, which makes it our responsibility as Bay Area residents to get involved. These brave activists have traveled across the globe to hold Chevron account for the horrific damage the company has caused to their communities, their health, their environment. Let’s stand with them.
If you’re here in the Bay Area, please come out to Chevron’s shareholder meeting in San Ramon tomorrow morning. Details and RSVP can be found here
If you’re not in the Bay Area, you can still speak out. There’s a page here that has all the info you need to call Chevron CEO John Watson and ask him to take responsibility for his company’s devastation around the globe. (The page is set up for Ecuador, as that’s what our Change Chevron campaign is focused on, but you can read any of the statements from around the world and base your call on that.)
I’ve been posting pre-written statements by these Chevron-impacted people on this blog for the past week. Today, I got to witness them all come together and deliver their messages in their own voices. Here are a couple photos so you can see that for yourselves. We'll update with video soon.
[caption id="attachment_98" align="alignnone" width="550" caption="Nile Malloy of Communities for a Better Environment is in the middle on the far side of the table; Cristóvão Luemba is seated next to João Antonio de Moraes in foreground with backs to camera."]
[caption id="attachment_99" align="alignnone" width="549" caption="Robinson Yumbo (middle, seated at table) from Ecuador speaks at the press conference. Also seated at the table: RAN's Ginger Cassady (left), Amazon Watch's Robert Collier (right). Luz Trinidad Andrea Cusangua is seated behind Robert."]
You can find all of the statements at TrueCostOfChevron.com