Amazon tribe turns oil spills into payday after 7 year legal battle

Environment and community


Occidental Petroleum has agreed to compensate Peru’s Achuar tribe for polluting its territories deep in the Amazon rainforest, concluding seven years of litigation and handing the indigenous group a hard-fought victory against a U.S. oil giant.

Members of the Achuar tribe on Thursday announced they reached a settlement with the Los Angeles-based oil company, which agreed to pay an unspecified amount for community health and development projects over the next several years.

Neither party will reveal the amount of the payout, which remains confidential for legal reasons. But both sides said they’re satisfied with the deal.

“I’d like to thank everyone who’s backed us in this process,” said Adolfina Garcia, an Achuar woman who claims one of her sons died from drinking water contaminated by oil near one of Oxy’s extraction wells.

“With the new projects, my [other] sons and five communities will benefit from education, health and development schemes,”…

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