Jun 10, 2021 News
– Citizens question who would compensate Caribbean economies in the event of catastrophic well blowout
By Kiana Wilburg
Kaieteur News – Over 100 Guyanese, including university lecturers and students, civil society activists and representatives of organisations that represent communities across the country, have sent a list of detailed questions to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to be answered in the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) for the Yellowtail Project.
Yellowtail is poised to be the fourth development project in the Stabroek Block by ExxonMobil Corporation’s subsidiary, Esso Exploration and Production Guyana Limited (EEPGL).
The questions in the public submission cover climate impact, harm to the ocean, the danger of a well blowout, flaring, noise, discharges into the ocean and whether Esso has the financial resources to carry out Yellowtail and safely decommission the wells when production stops.
The submission to the EPA reminded that the Macondo well blowout by British multinational BP in April 2010 had devastated the Gulf of Mexico and cost the oil company US$468bn. Noting that a well blowout could have a catastrophic impact on the Caribbean economies and environments, the submission ask searching questions about Esso’s ability to prevent and mitigate a blowout. It also asks whether Esso, a limited liability company, will compensate Caribbean countries for any damage to their tourism and fishing sectors in the event of a blowout.
Furthermore, the public submission requires the EIA to state the total amount of greenhouse gases that will be emitted and the impact those emissions will have on the climate system and the ocean.
Finella Martin, one of the students who helped to garner support for the submission, was keen to note the importance of the document that was submitted to the EPA as she said, “We are running out of time; we need to be more aware and educated on the impacts of greenhouse gas emissions from offshore drilling not just in Guyana but globally.”
Martin added, “Climate Change is no longer an assumption but our reality. We are seeing one of the worst flooding in history. I am proud that Guyana has strong environmental laws that empower us, the citizens, to stop the causes of climate change and not only preserve our beloved country but also our world.”
Attorney-at-Law, Melinda Janki, also shared her thoughts on the submission. Janki said, “Article 23 of the Constitution says that every citizen has a duty to participate in activities designed to improve the environment and protect the health of the nature. This is a good first step – to get the facts so people can make informed and educated decisions. This public submission to the EPA on Yellowtail is breathing life into the Constitution.”
According to Ms. Janki who drafted the Environmental Impact Assessment provisions 25 years ago, “The integrity of the EIA process depends on people being willing to look at what is proposed and ask questions. It’s not a top down exercise.”
The lawyer added, “It’s supposed to be a fully participatory process with the public scrutinising what is going on and holding the EPA and private sector to account…”
Jul 24, 2021By Sean Devers Kaieteur News – When Shimron Hetymer twice failed his fitness tests and failed to produce the runs his obvious natural talent suggested he should due to his erratic...
Jul 24, 2021
Jul 24, 2021
Jul 24, 2021
Jul 24, 2021
Jul 23, 2021
Kaieteur News – The Guyana Human Rights Association (GHRA) has replied to my “constant banging,” that is, my consistent... more
Freedom of speech is our core value at Kaieteur News. If the letter/e-mail you sent was not published, and you believe that its contents were not libellous, let us know, please contact us by phone or email.
Feel free to send us your comments and/or criticisms.
Contact: 624-6456; 225-8452; 225-8458; 225-8463; 225-8465; 225-8473 or 225-8491.
Or by Email: [email protected] / [email protected]