For Immediate Release
Aileen Suzara, FACES
US State Department Gets It Wrong on Chevron’s Operations in the Philippines
SAN FRANCISCO - Chevron Corporation's recent nomination to the
State Department's annual Award for Corporate Excellence (ACE) for its
Philippine-based operations was met with opposition from US and
In response to the nomination, FACES sent a letter to US Secretary of State
Hillary Clinton urging the State Department to rescind the nomination.
suffering from Chevron's toxic emissions, catastrophic spills, leakages, and
the risk of fires and explosions," said Mari Rose Taruc, FACES Chevron Campaign
Coordinator. "Nomination to the
ACE award ignores Chevron's negative impacts on the health of communities in
the Philippines and around the world where they operate."
FACES open letter to Secretary of State
Hillary Clinton highlighted Chevron's toxic operations in the Philippines. "Chevron Philippines is no corporation
to be proud of, not by the US or the Philippines. A little corporate donation to a local project does not
replace the many lives lost or harmed due to their toxic operations in the
fenceline communities of the Manila oil depots, as well as around the world
where they operate," said the letter.
Philippine civil society and
environmental groups have campaigned for years for the relocation of the
massive Chevron oil depot out of Pandacan, a residential district in Metro
Manila. An estimated 83,000 residents are directly impacted by the depot. Accidental
spills, leakages and fires have overwhelmed the community over the years. A
study conducted by Global Community Monitor in 2002 detected high levels of
benzene, a known carcinogen and component of gasoline, in the air around
Yet despite opposition from the
community and Church leaders, public health concerns, numerous ordinances, and a 2007 Supreme
Court decision that ordered Chevron to relocate their depot for the "protection
of the residents of Manila from catastrophic devastation," Chevron has
continued to stall out this order.
"We are asking for relocation of the depot to an area with a proper buffer zone,
away from the nearest communities. This is a holocaust waiting to happen," said leaders of Advocates for Environmental and
Social Justice (AESJ). AESJ is among the Manila-based groups currently leading
a campaign to relocate the depot.
FACES is an intergenerational organization that works for environmental justice within communities in the United States and in the Philippines, and builds partnerships through advocacy, education, service, and organizing.