Boycott News from Issue 107 July/August 2007
Clean up the Amazon
Chevron’s recent shareholder meeting was dominated by allegations of human rights abuses and environmental destruction. Two leaders of indigenous communities in the Ecuadorian Amazon confronted CEO David O’Reilly about the company’s massive toxic dumping in the region.
Dressed in traditional robes and coloured headdress, Mr Piaguaje, a leader of the Secoya indigenous people, told the meeting: “Our struggle is not for money. We want you to repair the damage so that our children do not have to continue suffering.”
The Amazon Watch campaign against Chevron (previously Texaco) started in 2002, and centres on oil spills and releases of toxic waste between 1972 and 1992.
Campaigners claim that the contamination was equivalent to 30 times the size of the Exxon Valdez disaster, and local indigenous communities are plagued by related health problems.
Amazon Watch are calling for consumers to boycott Chevron (Texaco Petrol in the UK) until the company cleans up its mess in the Amazon. A class-action lawsuit against Chevron in Ecuador is due to conclude in 2008, with the 30,000 plaintiffs demanding environmental remediation estimated at $6 billion.
Mr O’Reilly declined to comment on the matter while the case was still being heard in Ecuador.
Chevron is also on the Burma Campaign’s boycott list because it was one of the partners developing the Yadana offshore gas field in Burma. Burma is ruled by one of the most brutal dictatorships in the world and has been charged by the United Nations with a “crime against humanity” for its systematic abuses of human rights.
For more information visit Chevrontoxico. You can send an email to David O’Reilly from the website, and sign up for campaign updates. Alternatively write to Leila Salazar, Amazon Watch, 1 Haight St. Suite B San Francisco, CA 94102
Leading garden chain Wyevale has announced plans to stop selling patio heaters following concerns about their climate change impacts. Friends of the Earth (FoE) conducted a survey of DIY stores and garden centres, and Wyevale was the only one to indicate an end to their sale.
FoE Climate campaigner Craig Bennett said: “We’re delighted that Wyevale has decided to stop selling patio heaters, and urge other retailers to follow suit.” FoE is also asking shoppers to boycott these products.
For the uninitiated, patio heaters are gas appliances which blast out heat just in case someone happens to be outside without their cardie. It’s a tad worrying in a world that has supposedly accepted that global warming is happening.
Research in 2005 found there were 630,000 patio heaters being used in back-gardens around the UK,1 and they could produce CO2 equivalent to the emissions from all the homes in Bath!
As ethical living writer Leo Hickman pointed out in his Guardian column: “Standing in the garden with a hair dryer pointed about one’s body might make more sense, because at least the heat source would be directed towards the target instead of just radiating up into the heavens.” FoE also contacted B&Q, Focus, Homebase and Nottcutts regarding their sale of patio heaters, but they did not indicate that they were going to stop selling them. Readers can try to persuade them otherwise using the contact details below.
B&Q, Portswood House, 1 Hampshire Corporate Park, Chandlers Ford, Eastleigh, Hampshire SO53 3YX Tel: 0845 609 6688
Focus (DIY, Gawsworth House, Westmere Drive, Crewe, Cheshire CW1 6XB Tel: 0800 436 436
Homebase, Acton Gate, Stafford ST18 9AR Tel: 0845 077 8888
Notcutts Ltd, The Nursery, Woodbridge, Suffolk IP 12 4AF Tel: 01394 383344
Get more information on the campaign and climate change from Friends of the Earth, 26-28 Underwood St, London N1 7JQ
Tel: 020 7490 1555.
Save the seals
In the last four years the Canadian government has allowed over one and a quarter million baby seals to be brutally slaughtered by clubbing and shooting.
Respect for Animals is running an international campaign to highlight the barbarity, and new footage from this year’s hunt was posted on its website in April.
Respect for Animals are calling for consumers to boycott Canada until this practice stops. Action includes not visiting the country, avoiding buying Canadian seafood, and targeting supermarkets that sell Canadian seafood.
More information can be found at: Boycott Canada, PO Box 6500, Nottingham NG4 3GB, or tel 0115 952 5440.
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