Photo Essay: Ecuadorean Delegation Tours BP’s Oil Disaster in the Gulf

posted by Rainforest Action Network

On Tuesday, June 29 Houma and Grand Bayou American Indian leaders showed Ecuadorean leaders the impact of BP’s oil disaster on their coastal communities. The boat left from Port Sulphur and visited devastated wetlands, oil soaked wildlife, and the Grand Bayou village.

The Indigenous Ecuadorean leaders are in the Gulf coast to meet with American Indian tribes in the Gulf region and share their experiences coping with decades of Chevron’s massive oil contamination in their home.

Ecuadorean Indigenous Leaders Visit Gulf Coast Oil Impacted CommunitiesEmergildo Criollo (right) is a leader of the Cofan tribe in Ecuador’s Amazon Rainforest. Humberto Piaguaje (left) is the representative of the Secoya people to the Assembly of Delegates of Communities Affected by Chevron/Texaco.

Oil spill boat trip with Houma and Ecuadorean leadersMichael Dardar, Vice Principal Chief of the United Houma Nation sits with Emergildo Criollo, Humberto Piaguaje, Mariana Jimenez as they take a boat trip into the marshland to see BP’s oil disaster.

Houma and Ecuadorean leaders Tour the Gulf Oil SpillLocal resident Philip Simmons takes Houma and Ecuadorean leaders in his boat to see BP’s oil disaster.

On the Boat to Bay BaptisteMariana Jimenez on the boat ride leaving from Port Sulphur heading out to Bay Baptiste. She is a 71-year old grandmother from near Lago Agrio, Ecuador. Her home was soon surrounded by oil spills and contamination. Her husband, who worked for Texaco (now Chevron), and her sister, both died of cancer.

Oil in Louisiana’s Bay BaptisteOil contaminates the wetlands in Louisiana’s Bay Baptiste.

Oil near Grand Bayou, LouisianaAn oil boom laying in the marshland grass with oil on both sides.

Oil in Louisiana’s Bay BaptisteThick brown oil covers marshland grass while oil sheen floats on top.

Mariana Inspects the oil spillMariana inspects the oil spill saying the smell and feel of the oil reminds her of the oil contamination left by Chevon (formally Texaco) in her Amazon home.

Mariana Inspects the oil spillMariana’s oil coated hand after picking a blade of grass from the mash.

Humberto Piaguaje inspects BP's oil disasterHumberto Piaguaje inspects BP’s oil disaster in the marshlands.

Rosina Phillipe of Grand Bayou Nation welcomes Ecuadorean leaders

Rosina Phillipe of Grand Bayou village welcomes Ecuadorean leaders to here home on the water.

Rosina Phillipe talks about oil impact on her communityRosina Phillipe and the delegation share stories and lessons learned from living with oil contamination. (From left: Rosina Phillipe, Maria Ramos, Matiana Jiminez, Mitch Anderson, Humberto Piaguaje, Emergildo Criollo)

Emergildo Criollo on the way to Grand Bayou  Village
Emergildo Criollo in the boat leaving Grand Bayou Village.

See all the photo from the Gulf Coast trip in the Rainforest Action Network Flickr set