Amazon Defense Coalition

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Amazon Defense Coalition
TypeNon-governmental organization
Indigenous Rights
Area served
Ecuadorian Amazon

The Amazon Defense Coalition (Frente de Defensa de la Amazonia) is an Ecuadorian non-governmental organization created on May 16, 1994 and approved by the Ecuadorian Ministry of Social Welfare on June 4, 1998 under ministerial reference #535.[1]

The coalition focuses on regional, national and global environmental and collective rights in the Ecuadorian Amazon. It has offices in the Amazonian towns of Nueva Loja (also known as Lago Agrio) and Coca, as well as the nation's capital, Quito.

The Amazon Defense Coalition (ADC) structure is focused on training (a three-year integral leadership training course offered to Amazonian residents in Orellana and Sucumbíos provinces), legal (legal advice and defence of campesino and indigenous socio-environmental community rights), environmental monitoring (a technical team which monitors and reports on areas and communities that suffer from oil pollution as a result of drilling in the Amazon), and alternative products (promotion of cleaning and energy products that do not harm the environment as well as seeking local sustainable development and biodiversification).

The Amazon Defense Coalition was formed in 1994 after a group of 75 indigenous people and farmers brought an environmental clean-up lawsuit against Texaco (consolidated into Chevron Corporation in 2001) in the name of 30,000 Amazonian residents in a region the size of Rhode Island. The case was initially heard in a U.S. court in New York City and then moved to Nueva Loja, Ecuador in 2003. With a 2011 judgement of $18 billion against the oil giant, confirmed in 2013 by the Ecuador Supreme Court, it is potentially the biggest environmental litigation ever brought against a multi-national corporation. [2]

The ADC was initially the main organization to follow up the lawsuit. In 2001, the Assembly of People Affected by Texaco (ADAT) was created to better represent the affected communities and make the most significant decisions about the judicial process. The Amazon Defense Coalition became part of the ADAT, which later evolved into the Union of People Affected by Texaco (UDAPT) in 2012. However, the ADC continued to maintain its former structure and internal rules and to act as a social organization in defense of the rights of the Amazonian communities. [3]


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