Friday, September 01, 2017

Brazil Rejects Total's Bid to Drill the Amazon Reef

Brazil's environmental agency has rejected Total SA's environmental impact statement for its plans to drill for oil at the mouth of the Amazon. [photo courtesy: NASA ] Ibama said the international oil company had not answered questions about how drilling operations would impact marine wildlife, so its application for permits could not go forward. The agency gave Total a third chance for it to provide "adequate information" about the environmental impact of its project. The agency head warned that if Total does not address the outstanding concerns of the technical team evaluating the statement, "the licensing process would be finally archived".

The area to be explored, Fox do Amazonas basin could contain more oil than the proven reserves of the entire Gulf of Mexico or an estimated 14 billion barrels. Exploration plans have become entangled in controversy as conservation organizations including Greenpeace have launched campaigns to raise awareness of a massive, unspoiled coral reef just 28 kilometers away from proposed drilling sites. [photo courtesy: Greenpeace] Total purchased exploration blocks with BP and Petrobras in 2013. The agency wants the company to address how to limit the impact of drilling on marine mammals and turtles, clarify models for how oil in the water would disperse itself, as well as address Ibama’s initial rejection of Total’s proposals for environmental monitoring and other projects.