The Peruvian government is pushing ahead with plans to expand gas operations in a supposedly protected reserve in the Amazon despite calls by the United Nations to suspend them.
The company leading the operations, Pluspetrol, moved one step closer to proceeding with the expansion of the Camisea gas project - Peru's biggest ever energy development - following a report by the vice-ministry of inter-culturality (VMI) last week.
Pluspetrol's plans include drilling 18 wells and conducting seismic tests in an 'intangible' reserve for indigenous peoples living in 'voluntary isolation' and 'initial contact'.
The reserve is also part of the buffer zone for the Manu national park, where Unesco says the biological diversity "exceeds that of any other place on Earth."
Pilar Cameno, from Peruvian NGO DAR, told the Guardian that the expansion could lead to "violent encounters" between gas project workers and indigenous peoples, "increased mortality rates", the loss of land and access to resources, and environmental contamination.
"The Peruvian state must heed the UN rapporteur's recommendations and implement them", Cameno says. "What's at stake here is the survival of the indigenous peoples in isolation and initial contact - not just as individuals, but as whole cultures."
Here's how you can help:
- Writing a letter to the Peruvian government can make a real difference.
- Write to your Senators and members of Congress (US)
- Write to your local Peruvian embassy
Article courtesy of The Guardian. Learn more here.
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