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The true costs of Chevron: New report available

The Council of Canadians is a sponsoring organization to a new report, available today, that reveals the true costs of the 2nd largest U.S. oil company and 11th largest global corporation – Chevron.

Chevron operates in 180 countries, exploring for, producing, refining, transporting and marketing oil natural gas and gasoline. Major operations also include chemical, coal mining and power generation companies. According to its annual shareholder reports, Chevron received $19 billion in 2010 profits, its highest since 2008 and an 81% increase from the previous year.

These profits do not come without a cost.

You can read the full report here: The True Cost of Chevron: An Alternative Annual Report May 2011

The Council of Canadians is sponsoring this report because we are increasingly concerned about the role of Chevron in the tar sands (find out more, page 29 of the report) and in the Canadian Arctic.

Chevron won a federal auction for a 205, 000 hectare deepwater parcel off the coast of Yukon, by committing to spend C$103 million over the 5-year license exploring for oil and gas.  The license was acquired despite an earlier request to the federal government by the Inuvialuit Regional Corporation (IRC) to withdraw the bid.

Offshore drilling in the Arctic stands to have devastating impacts on the environment and coastal communities, and in the face of a climate crisis, is a signal of the wrong direction – we need to leave it in the ground.

The conditions for drilling offshore in the Arctic are particularly precarious. Chevron’s own Arctic Basin Assessment ranks the Beaufort Sea as the third (of eleven) most challenging Arctic basins for oil and gas exploration.  Arctic conditions include freezing temperatures, reduced visibility, high winds and sea states, and extreme storms.  Weather conditions and a lack of infrastructure also pose a unique challenge for oil spill response.

As the alternative report documents, Chevron’s long history of ravaging natural environments, violating human rights, ignoring the longstanding decisions of Indigenous communities, destroying traditional livelihoods, and converting its dollars into unjust political influence in the United States and around the world. This isn’t comforting when it comes to pursuing Arctic offshore drilling which comes at heightened, unacceptable risks.

You can find out more about the failure of industry to prevent and respond to offshore disasters in this op-ed featured in the Huffington Post by Antonia Juhasz, director of the Energy Program at Global Exchange, author of Black Tide: the Devastating Impact of the Gulf Oil Spill and co-editor of the alternative report, here.

You can read the Council of Canadians, Chevron in the Beaufort Sea on page 31 of the report.

The report’s release is timed with Chevron’s annual shareholder meeting happening tomorrow in San Ramon, California.

Beginning yesterday and continuing through to Thursday, the true costs of Chevron’s operations are being exposed in San Ramon, from a teach-in and press conference featuring community leaders and advocates impacted by Chevron from places such as  Angola, Ecuador, Indonesia, Nigeria, Alaska and Texas to a toxic tour and demonstration.

You can find out more at the True Cost of Chevron website.

You can also see this alternative ad (responding to Chevron’s ads which suggest they are a green, responsible company) and others here. You can also join the facebook group.