18 Jan 2012

Correction: Yes, some environmentalists lie

In this post, I accused Coyote (and his readers) of being too quick to condemn participants in a lawsuit for trying to make vague evidence work for them. I put more emphasis on the uncertainty over measuring pollution, but it turns out that the parties concerned were more interested in spinning evidence as plaintiffs accusing Chevron/Texaco in the Ecuador oil-water-pollution case.* Read this New Yorker article.

As a believer of "innocent until proven guilty" and the burden of proof -- even in a civil case -- resting with the plaintiff, I am changing my opinion on this one -- these environmentalists did not do the right thing -- they pushed their little evidence too far in their quest for Chevron's billions.**

Bottom Line: Don't lie -- even if others do.
* Chevron bought Texaco during the 20-year lawsuit.

** Oh, and let's not forget that Ecuador's national oil company was Texaco's partner, that the government had already agreed that Texaco had made amends for damages, and that Texaco's practices were "legal" at the time they were taken.