Ecuador's government has issued a permit for oil drilling in the pristine Yasuni National Park, which makes up part of the Amazon rainforest. The Yasuni National Park, a declared UN biosphere, is considered one of the most biodiverse areas on the planet, and is home to two uncontacted indigenous tribes.
The park sits at the intersection of the Andes, the Equador, and the Amazon region. One hectare of the Yasuni is home to a richer mix of trees, birds, amphibians, and reptiles than the USA and Canada put together. It is an area where many species of flora and fauna specific to South America converge.
Last August, President Rafeal Correa scrapped a pioneering scheme, the Yasuni Ishpingo-Tambococha-Tiputini (ITT) initiative, to keep oil in the ground in return for donations from the international community. He said only $13m (£8m) of the $3.6bn goal had been given by foreign countries and individuals.
Permits have been signed for oil production to go ahead, and drilling might begin as soon as 2016. The permits allow Petroamazonas, a subsidiary of the state oil company, to begin construction of access roads and camps to prepare for drilling. However, activists in Ecuador say Petroamazonas had a bad record on oil spills, and cannot be trusted to drill safely in the Yasuni.
Please sign the petition, and ask President Correa of Ecuador to save the Yasuni National Park.