CBC – Canadian Indigenous leaders travel to see Ecuador environmental disaster

The group hopes to ally with 60 Indigenous tribes in Ecuador to help them fight Chevron in Canadian court. Canadian Indigenous leaders witnessed first hand this week the devastation and pollution left behind by oil companies in Indigenous lands in Ecuador.

“What we’ve witnessed here is tragic…shocking,” said former Assembly of First Nations (AFN) leader Phil Fontaine, speaking from Quito via telephone. Leaders travelled to Quito, Ecuador to visit with Indigenous tribes in the Amazon whose lands and waterways have been severely affected by pollution.

Tribes in the Lago Agrio region have been fighting oil giant Chevron in court for more than 20 years over environmental and social damages from hundreds of abandoned, unlined waste pits and the dumping of billions of gallons of oil waste into local waterways.

More than 30,000 Indigenous people living in the region are affected. It is estimated that a 50,000 sq km area of land has been poisoned by disregarded oil and toxic waste.

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