It has been two years since a deadly spill contaminated La Pasión River and destroyed the livelihoods of communities in Guatemala’s Sayaxché region. The corporation responsible, REPSA, has yet to take real steps to address the environmental and social damages it caused.
A new Oxfam investigation reveals that despite lofty commitments to address community needs in the region, REPSA has silenced critics and failed to compensate those most impacted by the spill.
REPSA’s inaction has left community members waiting for justice, while a culture of violence and intimidation targeting environmental activists runs rampant. Now, armed with Oxfam’s damning new investigation, it’s time to come together once again to hold REPSA to account through demanding real action from its customers Cargill, Wilmar and major brands like Nestle.
Demand full transparency from REPSA repairing the Guatemalan communities it destroyed and implementing a sustainable palm oil policy.
After a court found REPSA guilty of ecocide for the damages caused by the spill, Rigoberto Lima Choc, a schoolteacher and plaintiff in the case, was shot and killed. But in spite of REPSA’s “zero tolerance” stance on violence, local activists report new cases of alleged intimidation.
Despite being charged with ecocide, REPSA has yet to implement a plan to compensate community members like hundreds of out-of-work fisherman whose livelihoods were destroyed along with La Pasión River’s aquatic life. Instead of taking action, REPSA has stalled official investigations with new legal appeals that are further escalating the tensions causing violence and threats to environmental activists in the region.
We’ve come together in the past to take on the human rights and environmental abuses of the palm oil industry. Thanks to mass pressure from our movement partners, Cargill and Wilmar, two of REPSA’s biggest palm oil buyers, demanded REPSA move towards responsible palm oil production. Now, we need to go straight to REPSA and demand justice for the countless Sayaxché residents still reeling from REPSA’s deadly spill.
Call on Cargill, Wilmar and Nestle to hold REPSA to account for the social and environmental impacts of its reckless palm oil production in Guatemala.