Holding Chevron Accountable in the Caspian Region

California-based Chevron is arguably the most influential petroleum company in the Caspian Sea basin. It was the first major foreign oil company to secure operations in Kazakhstan in 1993, and has since become the country’s largest private oil producer as a result of its investments at the Karachaganak and Tengiz Fields. Chevron has also long been actively working across the sea in Azerbaijan, with a stake in the Azerbaijan International Operating Company, which develops crude at the country’s largest offshore field, Azeri-Chirag-Guneshli. Moreover, Chevron is involved in two of the region’s prime hydrocarbon transport routes—the Caspian Pipeline Consortium and the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan Pipeline. These projects have been mired in gross public health, environmental, human rights and labor violations, earning Chevron the reputation of a dirty company with strong ties to the corrupt governments of the Caspian.

Seeking to further expand its operations, Chevron announced in late 2009 that it is in negotiations with the highly repressive government of Turkmenistan for a stake in the development of the South Yolotan Gas Field, considered one of the five largest deposits in the world. In April 2010, Turkmenistan’s President confirmed that negotiations with Chevron are progressing, with exploration, production, refining, transportation, petrochemical and offshore projects all under consideration. As we have witnessed in Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan, engaging with corrupt and opaque regimes to secure hydrocarbons without first insisting on significant improvements in transparency, rule of law and human rights leads to unjust and unsustainable policies and practices. As a leader in the hydrocarbon-rich Caspian region, Chevron must set the bar for corporate responsibility, and it is critical that the existing bar is significantly raised to meet or exceed the standards set by national and international law and practice.

Recognizing Chevron as a common denominator in many of the region’s most problematic development projects, Crude Accountability is campaigning to expose the behavior of this American company in the Caspian basin. Most significantly, we have been working to uncover and make known to the public information about Chevron’s role in the environmental, health and human rights violations at the Karachaganak Field, where we are campaigning with residents of the nearby village of Berezovka for relocation and compensation. Detailed information on the Berezovka campaign can be found on our Karachaganak page.

Below please find a collection of written materials, photographs, videos and radio interviews describing the work that Crude Accountability is undertaking with the True Cost of Chevron network, which is a growing group of US and international NGOs committed to revealing the truth about Chevron’s operations worldwide.


Press Releases

Crude Accountability Addresses Chevron