Webinar will share concerns about Canadian oil and gas company Parex Resources in Colombia

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Click here to register to hear Ivan Madero, Oscar Sampayo and Karen Hamilton speak on April 29 about Parex Resources in Colombia.

This past December, Ivan Madero of CREDHOS and Oscar Sampayo of CRY-GEAM spoke at this media conference to express their concerns about Calgary-based Parex Resources and their Aguas Blancas oil field in Colombia.

They will share the latest on this situation on this webinar that will take place just one week prior to the Parex Resources virtual shareholders meeting on May 6.

Previously expressed concerns include:

In January 2017, CRY-GEAM posted this video on Facebook noting concerns about the absence of needed environmental documents and in April 2017 this photo of a truck on Facebook with concerns about runoff into the Colorada River.

In April 2017, CRY-GEAM also posted this video on Twitter with the text: “Parex in Simacota, Campo Aguas Blancas, without archaeological management plan, without environmental permit, above the law and communities. Who responds?”

Export Development Canada financing

According to Export Development Canada, its financing and support to Parex Resources has included: $25-50 million (07-05-2018), $50-100 million (22-02-2019), and $50-100 million (27-05-2019).

In its most recent financial statement (for year end 2020 posted on March 3, 2021), Parex Resources notes: “The Company has also provided a general security agreement to Export Development Canada (“EDC”) in connection with the performance security guarantees that support letters of credit provided to the Colombian National Hydrocarbon Agency (“ANH”) related to the exploration work commitments on its Colombian concessions (see note 24 – Commitments). This performance guarantee facility has a limit of $150.0 million (December 31, 2019 – limit of $150.0 million) of which $21.9 million (December 31, 2019 – $25.4 million) is utilized at December 31, 2020.”

Note 24 in that financial statement adds: “At December 31, 2020 EDC has provided the Company’s bank with performance security guarantees to support approximately $21.9 million (December 31, 2019 – $25.4 million) of the letters of credit issued on behalf of Parex. The EDC guarantees have been secured by a general security agreement issued by Parex in favour of EDC. The letters of credit issued to the ANH are reduced from time to time to reflect completed work on an ongoing basis.”

Karen Hamilton from Above Ground will help us understand what this means and share her analysis of the role EDC has played in financing oil and gas operations where human rights and environmental concerns have been expressed.

Criminalization of social leaders

Without a resolution to the concerns, community members undertook a blockade of the Parex oil field in March 2020. By September of that year, Parex had taken two social leaders to court over this protest claiming it had harmed their good name. But by October, a municipal court had dismissed the company’s challenge against the social leaders. Madero and Sampayo spoke about this at their media conference last December.


Colombian energy minister Maria Fernanda Suarez had named Parex as one of the companies interested in pursuing a fracking pilot project in Colombia. While Parex did not bid for a contract, this webinar will also discuss the ExxonMobil Platero project (with connections to Toronto-based Sintana Energy) and the Ecopetrol Kale project.

Please register now to hear more about Parex Resources and the risks faced by environmental defenders opposed to conventional extractivism and fracking.

The image above is of Adolfo Salinas Coba, one of the social leaders taken to court by Parex, who says: “We defend water, because water is life, and I would not exchange a glass of water for a glass of oil.” Last month, CREDHOS tweeted: “We highlight the struggle of the Bajo Simacota community against contamination by oil spills caused by Parex.”

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