Romanian farmers v Chevron

I defend my land and my humble life!

I defend my land and my humble life!

We have potatoes to eat, an improvised stove. We protest to protect our way of life and our health. — Alexandru Focsa, local farmer at protest camp

Police arrived at night, they beat us up with batons and dragged us away. — Alexandru Focsa

Areas of the world where extractive industries, global corporations, are in conflict with local communities, are beginning to resemble war zones, blockades, razor wire, tooled-up para-military cops brutally beating peaceful protesters.

It is doubtful anyone other than the farming folk who live there, had ever heard of the Romanian village of Pungesti, until Chevron decided to frack for shale gas.

For the villagers, this was a threat to their way of life, they are dependent on clean water.

Doina Dediu:

Our kitchens are filled with home made jams and preserves, sacks of nuts, crates of honey and cheese, all produced by us.

We are not even that poor. Maybe we don’t have money, but we have clean water and we are healthy and we just want to be left alone.

Poverty is not measured by money, it is measured by quality of life.

A protest camp was established by local farmers. They were attacked by para-military police, people were dragged out of their houses and beaten. Such was the brutality, many had to be taken away in ambulances. Chevron brought in its own private security force.

The corrupt Romanian government claims it needs fracking to lessen its dependence on Russian gas. Romania is not dependent upon Russian gas, it has its own substantial gas reserves, there is nothing to stop Chevron exporting the shale gas to the West, where it would get a better price. Romania should invest in renewable energy.

Romania ranks high on international corruption indices.

What is laughable, corrupt officials on Romania are blaming Russia for the protests.

When one of the corrupt politicians was asked for proof of the money he had claimed Russia was pouring in to finance anti-fracking was forced to admit he had no proof, but then went on to say that only showed how clever the Russians were.

Romania Without Them, one of the groups fighting Chevron, was founded to fight corruption in Romania.

The villagers have said they wish to see alternative energy developed.

Thus hardly allies of Gazprom, and a dastardly Russian plot to keep Romania hooked up to Russian gas.

There is a heavy American presences in Romania. This appears to be more geared to upping the anti against Russia, than any genuine interest in Romania.

Pungesti farmers have every reason to kick out Chevron. In the Amazon, Texaco (now owned by Chevron) for thirty years contaminated pristine rainforest and rivers with oil and chemical contamination from their drilling operations. Chevron has been fined more than $18 billion, which they have refused to pay. Chevron is now being taken to the International Criminal Court.

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2 Responses to “Romanian farmers v Chevron”

  1. keithpp Says:

    What’s wrong with ISDS? Romania’s environment & history under attack
    http://touchstoneblog.org.uk/2015/07/whats-wrong-with-isds-romanias-environment-and-history-under-attack/

  2. keithpp Says:

    Corporate vampires have tried to suck $4 billion out of Romania, and with TTIP the UK could be next
    http://www.independent.co.uk/voices/comment/corporate-vampires-have-tried-to-suck-4-billion-out-of-romania-and-with-ttip-the-uk-could-be-next-10435975.html

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