Tuesday, November 27, 2007


Ecuador's national oil company Petroecuador has said that it incurred the loss of some 5,000 barrels of oil output because of a weekend protest that disrupted operations at a key production facility, Spanish news agency EFE reported Tuesday.

The protest began Sunday in Dayuma, a town in the Amazon province of Orellana where villagers blocaded a bridge to all traffic.

At about the same time others forced their way into the Auca Sur station and electric plant demanding that operators shut down the entire power oil system.

By the early hours of Monday, another group of protesters reached the Auca 61D well and used dynamite to disable a hydraulic pump, effectively shutting down the installation, Petroecuador said.

According to El Mercurio the villagers are demanding The strikers new paved roads in the area, electrical service, a plan by the oil company to improve the local environment and jobs.

In March this year, a blockade by protesters in the Amazon region forced the company to cut oil exports by 36,000 barrels per day for about a week.

The following is from the Houston Chronicle.

Protesters Take Ecuador Oil Field

QUITO, Ecuador — Villagers took over an oil field run by state oil company Petroecuador to demand jobs, electricity and paved roads, the company reported.

Daily production at the Auca Sur field in Ecuador's eastern jungle dropped by some 5,000 barrels to about 171,000 barrels as a result of Monday's protest, Petroecuador said in a statement.

The protesters reportedly cut communication lines at Auca Sur and four other fields, and threw a stick of dynamite at one of the pumps, but there were no reports of injuries.

The statement did not say how many protesters were involved or give other details, and it was not clear whether the field was still occupied. The villagers could not be reached for comment.

Ecuador is South America's fifth-largest oil producer with a daily production of about a half-million barrels of crude.

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