Not just Russians smacking up greenie ratbags

The Russians are giving the Greenpeace ratbags a good serve at the moment but they aren’t the only ones. Chevron is running one up the lying ratbags.

In a Manhattan courtroom Tuesday, one of the highest-profile environmental campaigns of recent decades is about to be exposed as nothing more than a fraud and extortion racket — “greenmail.”

Chevron is suing lawyer Steven Donziger and a number of activist environmental groups in a civil-racketeering suit, claiming that his landmark $19 billion award against the oil company in an Ecuadorean court was the product of a criminal conspiracy.

Ironically, much of the company’s evidence comes from footage shot for “Crude,” an award-winning pro-Donziger documentary that premiered with much publicity at the Sundance Film Festival.

In an eight-year suit in Ecuador, Donziger and his environmentalist allies argued that the oil company had wantonly polluted the pristine Ecuadorean rainforest, creating vast areas of poisoned land and causing huge spikes in cancer and other diseases.

The case drew vast media coverage, with pieces in The New York Times, Vanity Fair and The New Yorker; a sympathetic “60 Minutes” piece featured the poor and sickly Ecuadorean peasants. And celebrities like Daryl Hannah embarked on some cancer tourism, hugging natives before taking her Chevron-powered jet back to Hollywood.   

An Ecuadorean court found Chevron responsible for massive pollution and awarded the rainforest communities (and lawyers) $19 billion. It was hailed as one of the most significant environmental victories in decades.

Guilty or not, corporations often pay such settlements so they can move on with business. But Chevron decided to fight back — and it seems to have uncovered a massive green extortion plot.

Chevron got a court order for more than 500 hours of footage from “Crude” that never made it into the documentary.

They show Donziger full of contempt for the country he says he cares about, openly boasting about how corrupt Ecuador’s judicial system is and planning to intimidate the judge because “the only language . . . this judge is going to understand is one of pressure, intimidation and humiliation.”

The filmmaker even recorded the lawyers lamenting that no pollution had spread from the original drilling sites and “right now all the reports are saying . . . nothing has spread anywhere at all” and how this lack of pollution was a serious problem.

But the footage also shows Don­ziger figuring he can brazen it out: “If we take our existing evidence on groundwater contamination, extrapolate based on nothing other than our . . . theory . . . then we can do it. And we can get money for it.”

There’s more.


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As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story. When he’s not creating the news, he tends to be in it, with protagonists using the courts, media and social media to deliver financial as well as death threats.

They say that news is something that someone, somewhere, wants kept quiet. Cam Slater doesn’t do quiet and, as a result, he is a polarising, controversial but highly effective journalist who takes no prisoners.

He is fearless in his pursuit of a story.

Love him or loathe him, you can’t ignore him.

To read Cam’s previous articles click on his name in blue.

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