WHAT IS OILWATCH
Oilwatch is a resistance network that opposes the activities of oil companies in tropical countries.
1. Oilwatch is a network that builds solidarity and fosters a common identity among peoples of the Global South. Oilwatch understands similarities in the current pattern of resource exploitation in countries of the Global South, which reflects historical legacy of disempowerment of peoples, plunder of natural resources and destruction of environment, and considers the recognition of the right of peoples to self-determination as primary in the resolution of environmental problems.
2. Oilwatch is a network of RESISTANCE to the negative impacts of fossil fuels (coal, gas and oil) extraction and related industries on PEOPLES and their environment.
3. Oilwatch exists and works to stop the expansion of socially destructive and environmentally damaging oil activity in the tropics and other parts of the Global South.
4. Oilwatch members support all initiatives of local peoples to resist coal, oil and gas activities. These initiatives include monitoring of devastation and violations that arise directly or indirectly from oil activity, and support for local demand for compensation and restoration.
5. Oilwatch is a network which applies and fosters DECENTRALIZATION. It works more as a movement rather than a centralized entity.
6. Oilwatch supports nations, peoples and communities that resist the destructive activities of oil companies.
7. Oilwatch creates consciousness of a model of development that is non-fossil fuel-based, socially responsible, and is environmentally sensitive and protective
8. Oilwatch promotes exercising of rights of nature, human rights and collective human rights of communities affected by the oil activity to oppose exploration and exploitation, facing companies and governments at the local, national and international level. It demands and advocates that communities that resist hydrocarbon operations should be recognized rather than suppressed.
9. Oilwatch encourages energy sovereignty, promotes energy autonomy and works with alternative politics of communities, regions and countries to initiate the pathway towards energy sovereignty, in such a way that it promotes the abandonment of the oil model. The aim is to anticipate a political proposal that gives substance to our strategies of resistance that allows new alliances with other sectors and for us to obtain greater legitimacy with society.
- To stop the expansion of socially destructive and environmentally damaging oil activity in the tropics and other parts of the global South.
- Support communities in the global South that resist the destructive activities of oil companies
- Create consciousness of a model of development that is not based on destructive energy sources and respects sovereignty, justice, dignity and human rights.
- Forge a network of national and regional organizations that acts at the local level so that they can intervene in a united way at the international level in protection of the lives and livelihood of local peoples.
- Link the environmental impacts with that of the social impacts of the hydrocarbon activities, from a Southern prospective.
Support local resistances
Oilwatch promotes exercising of human rights and collective human rights of communities affected by the fossil fuels activities to oppose exploration and exploitation, facing companies and governments at the local, national and international level. It proposes that the communities that resist the hydrocarbon operations should be recognized, respected and supported rather than suppressed.
Propose a Moratorium to new oil and gas projects
Oilwatch promotes a movement to stop the expansion of the fossil fuels frontier, through suspension of exploration for hydrocarbons, avoiding in this way, local and global environmental, social and economic impacts. Oilwatch sees the moratorium as a transition step towards energy sovereignty with low impact on local ecosystems and global climate, in a sustainable society, and it inscribes it in acknowledgement of sovereignty of the nations and control of the local communities over natural resources.
Promote energy sovereignty
Oilwatch works for alternative politics that enable communities, regions and countries to initiate the pathway towards energy sovereignty, in such a way that it will make possible the abandonment of the civilization based on the fossil fuels model. The aim is to anticipate a political proposal that gives substance to our strategies of resistance that allows new alliances with other sectors and for us to obtain greater legitimacy with society.
Open dialogues about a new non-oil civilization
OBJECTIVES OF THE NETWORK
The Oilwatch network was born inspired by the necessity to develop global strategies for communities affected by oil activities and to support the resistance processes of communities that do not want to see their territories affected, to work for sustainability and collective rights.
Amongst the functions of the network are: the exchange of information on oil company operations in each affected country, their practices of operation and the distinctive resistance movements and international campaigns against specific companies.
Oilwatch looks to increase environmental consciousness on a global scale, exposing the impacts of oil activity on tropical forests and on the local populations, establishing as well, links to the destruction of biodiversity, with climate change, with the violation of human rights and with the role of the Multi-Lateral Bank of Credit.
WHO ARE THE MEMBERS OF OILWATCH?
During February of 1996, in Quito â€“ Ecuador OilwatchÂ´s constituting meeting was held, with the participation of 15 organizations from Nigeria, South Africa, Cameroon, Gabon, Thailand, Sri Lanka, East Timor, Mexico, Guatemala, Peru, Colombia and Brazil.
Currently the network has members in more than fifty countries. National and regional networks have been formed in Asia and Africa.
ACTIVITIES - COORDINATION
Oilwatch has a coordination office in Quito, Ecuador that is in charge of coordinating with the member organizations of Oilwatch and the regional offices in Africa (Nigeria), South East Asia (Indonesia) and Mesoamerica (Nicaragua).
Also, Oilwatch has an international Steering Committee..
Every two years there is a meeting of the General Assembly of all the members of Oilwatch and an annual meeting of the International Steering Committee.
PRODUCTION OF INFORMATION
- The Resistance Bulletin, available to members in English, French and Spanish, is distributed via email and available on the website.
In this bulletin, technical reports on oil companies are discussed and oil company operations (the Secretariat has a database on the subject).
- Information for dissemination and for support of campaigns, depending on the materials, can be made in print or other mediums.
- Maintain a website with information on the oil industry and resistance processes.
Â· Production of books on resistance cases and other issues. Â·
WORKSHOPS AND EXCHANGES
Other activities that Oilwatch have realized are:
- The organization and facilitation of the participation of representatives of the network in meetings on oil related problems.
- The organization of exchanges between people from affected areas from other regions and or other countries.
- Workshops or courses with affected or potentially affected groups that include tours or observations in affected areas in which it is possible to identify the impacts of oil activities.
- Campaign support proposed by members
- Functioning as a link between campaigns
- Functioning as a bridge between campaigns with similar proposals or strategies
Current campaigns are:
- Campaign for a post-oil civilization
- Energy sovereignty
HOW TO BECOME PART OF THE NETWORK
To be part of the Oilwatch network, NGOâ€™s, networks of NGOâ€™s, organizations or persons must be interested in working in a a network that resists the activities of oil companies, pursuing at the same time, its impacts at a local and global level and realizing pressure campaigns against oil companies. To become involved in the network those interested should be in agreement with the principles and strategies of the network and can formally solicit to an Oilwatch contact point in your home country, in a regional office or to the Secretariat with a formal letter indicating your: field of work and mail address, telephone and fax, to the following address:
tel +234 84 236365
Port Harcourt - Nigeria