Today, as Chevron executives and shareholders meet for their annual meeting, the company is under increasing pressure to pledge not to drill in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.
Earlier this month, a group of institutional investors totaling $2.52 trillion in assets sent a letter to major banks and oil and gas companies, including Chevron, urging urging them not to initiate any oil and gas development in the Arctic Refuge. The letter cited economic and reputational risks, as well as threats to human rights and the environment.
“Chevron executives and shareholders must reject drilling in the Arctic Refuge coastal plain,” said Bernadette Demientieff, Executive Director of the Gwich’in Steering Committee. “This place, the calving grounds of the porcupine caribou herd and the sacred place where life begins, cannot be destroyed. We will not allow our last untouched ecosystem to be stolen for greed. With courage, strength, and determination, we will defeat any attempt to drill in this sacred place. We have our ancestors standing with us, and although no one said this fight would be easy, we are survivors, we are strong, and we are warriors for the Arctic. The decisions that we make today will decide whether this sacred place will be preserved for future generations. Please stand with us by leaving it intact. Together we will defend the Arctic Refuge, the porcupine caribou herd, and the Gwich’in way of life.”
“Companies like Chevron are at a crossroads,” said Lena Moffitt, Senior Director of the Sierra Club’s Our Wild America Campaign. “They can side with a growing number of investors, tribes, environmental advocates, and climate justice groups by pledging to stay out of the Arctic Refuge and instead invest in the clean energy of the future, or they can risk losing their social license and trillions in funds in pursuit of the dirty fuels of the past.”