By Stephen Peacock,
Posted on Wed Feb 7th, 2007 at 11:49:47 PM EST
In an otherwise comprehensive report, Indigenous Peruvians Oppose New Oil Concessions On Their Lands, the Environmental New Service (ENS) noted that just last week it came to light that "U.S. taxpayers' money funded the studies behind the creation of the most controversial blocks" of oil concessions in the Peruvian Amazon. While ENS indeed confirmed that the U.S. is directly involved in the exploitation of the Amazon, allow me to offer one clarification: Washington, D.C.'s financial backing of the pseudo-research justifying the endeavor was revealed to the public nearly two years ago, right here at the Narcosphere (see Peru Oil, Gas Tech Project Seeks To Lure Foreign Investors).
As the June 5, 2005 Narcosphere article reported:
The U.S. Trade & Development Agency (USTDA) has launched a technology assistance project that will enable the government of Peru to spark private-sector exploration of untapped oil and natural-gas reserves -– an initiative whose primary aim is to entice foreign investors. This attempted expansion of oil- and gas-exploration opportunities in Peru comes at a time when its neighbor to the southeast, Bolivia, stands practically on the brink of civil war over the control of such national hydrocarbon resources.
Likewise, in early 2006, the Narcosphere was the first media outlet to report that the U.S. Agency for International Development was seeking -- surely for the benefit of mankind -- to integrate and coordinate South American natural resource management initiatives (see: U.S. Intends to Share 'Stewardship' of Amazon Conservation Efforts.
As a follow-up to this apparent (and transparent) move by the Bush Administration to appease South American environmentalists and indigenous-rights activists, Narcosphere reported the U.S. Interior Department was now jumping on the Peruvian petrochemical-exploration and hydrocarbon-extraction bandwagon. In an undeniably sarcastic/satirical fashion, the Jan. 19, 2006 piece U.S. Seeks to Enlighten Sightless Peruvians on Economics of Protected Lands revealed that Interior was attempting to recruit a private contractor experienced in "presenting economic data in convincing, comprehensible ways." (emphasis added)
It revealed how the contractor would be tasked with sharing these "skills" during an industry workshop in Lima where he or she must "guide participants through an application of benefit-cost analysis for a selected protected area in Peru." Such training "is especially important, since workshop participants will need to take the skills learned in the course and apply them to newly created protected areas within Peru."
Sad, but true.
Equally true, folks, is the fact that you read about these troubling developments here first. Please help sustain such independent journalism at the Narcosphere/Narco News Bulletin by contributing to the Fund for Authentic Journalism.