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  • Workers cleaning up oil at the Coca River's banks, Orellana, Ecuador, June 24, 2020.

    Workers cleaning up oil at the Coca River's banks, Orellana, Ecuador, June 24, 2020. | Photo: Twitter/ @marlonvargas76

Published 26 June 2020
Opinion

This new environmental impact worsens the health situation of the Indigenous communities.

The Confederation of Indigenous Nationalities of the Ecuadorian Amazon (Confeniae) Friday denounced a new oil spill in Coca River’s watershed in the Amazon basin.

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“On the afternoon of June 22, the community members reported a strong smell of diesel and hydrocarbon stains in the Coca river, near the Community of Sardines and San Pedro, in the Orellana province,” Confenaie states. 

The Confenaie president Marlon Vargas posted a video that showed the oil company Petroecuador's workers cleaning oil remains from the river shores. 

"That is what they are hiding from us, what they are hiding from the people, an oil spill,” he said.

 

Petroecuador denies the existence of a new oil spill and assures that the observed contamination comes from the remnants of a previous spill.  

"It is highly unlikely that it is a remnant of the April 7 spill, as the company EP Petroecuador intends to say," Confenaie stressed based on the size and number of spots observed by the community members.

On April 7, about 15,000 barrels of crude oil spilled in Coca and Napo rivers after a land displacement in San Rafael municipality, in the Sucumbios province. The contamination affected over 2,000 families. 

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Marlon Vargas
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