Message from the Amazon - A blog by Christine Arena

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Message from the Amazon - A blog by Christine Arena

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Message from the Amazon


The 3BL Media blog roll is a select list of the most influential, respected, and authoritative voices in corporate social responsibility. Compiled from the 3BL Media staff’s extensive contacts with longtime CSR commentators, these bloggers offer relevant news, opinions, and ideas about all things CSR in one convenient place.  

Sunday, December 20, 2009 - 9:43am


One hundred and five million barrels. That’s how much crude the International Energy Agency (IEA) estimates that we will consume per day by the year 2030. Pretty staggering considering the fact that delegates from nearly 200 countries just gathered in Copenhagen with the singular goal of solving the world’s carbon emissions problem.

Going in, there was significant skepticism about the developed world’s ability to work with emerging economies in order to come to a workable agreement on how to share the burdens related to climate change. Now, with only a moderately aggressive climate change agreement in place, the IEA estimates that global oil consumption will continue to rise – and with it, greenhouse gas emissions, international tensions, and the race of top oil firms to tap into the world’s reserves wherever and however they can.

Deep in the trenches of Ecuador lies an unfortunate victim of the developed world’s unwillingness to more rapidly taper its addiction to fossil fuels. It is a primal rainforest – an incredibly pristine and biodiverse region, holding the greatest known selection of trees, insects and amphibians on earth. The Amazon rainforest serves a distinct purpose for humanity, providing essential nutrients, absorbing large quantities of carbon dioxide and emitting oxygen into the atmosphere. It is home to several indigenous communities, including the Achuar, Shuar, and Kichwa peoples, who have lived there for millennia.

Over 35 oil firms keep a keen eye on this precious ecosystem, as they have great incentive to unearth what lies beneath. “We’ve been following oil and gas development in the Amazon since 2004 and the picture has changed before our eyes,” Matt Finer of Save America’s Forests told The Guardian back in 2008. “When you look at where the oil and gas blocks are, they overlap perfectly on top of the peak biodiversity spots, almost as if by design, and this is in one of the most, if not the most, biodiverse place on Earth.”


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Keywords: Amazon | Christine Arena | Conservation | Crude Oil | Deforestation | Fuel | South America | The Guardian | climate | environment