I was not surprised that Exxon’s response to my August 2, 2022 letter involves the same old fancy talking points through their public relations that mean nothing to the people of Guyana and are only meant for kerfuffle . Since they have no substance, their game is that as soon as someone exposes their negligence and flaws, their only strategy is to resort to their one buzzword “misinformation” which becomes really, really annoying. Still, Editor, I’m glad we’ve finally figured out how to get their attention and coerce their hand into giving us at least some kind of information, no matter how minimal.
That aside, I find it insulting to the intelligence of the Guyanese people that Ms. Persaud and her bosses claim, without laughing, that “the company has always been open and transparent about the volume of gas flared”. Don’t they know that we can read and follow what is happening? Or are they suffering from very severe episodes of amnesia? Since, besides daily denunciations from all walks of life for their lack of transparency, how could they forget that it was just over a week ago when Mr. Ryan, their production manager, dodged and refused to answer the very simple question as to how much gas is flared. Unfortunately, I really don’t think they forgot; they just take us for fools and think we don’t pay attention.
Anyway, Ms. Persaud, here’s a soft bullet for you to back up your sudden plea for transparency piety: name one person who has ever said publicly that Exxon has been transparent; and don’t worry Ms. Persaud, I won’t take so much of your time to ask you to name the countless people who have called Exxon for non-transparency. Regarding the lie that Mr. Rod Henson did not sign any document committing unlimited/full liability coverage, did Ms. Persaud or Mr. Routledge not read the Liza 2 license signed by Mr. Henson himself after others and I have brought it to their attention? So, for your education, Ms. Persaud and Mr. Routledge, here is what [Liza 2 Permit] said:
Section 12.1 states that “The license holder shall have insurance…”
Section 12.4: “The EPA shall review the policy of insurance…the review is subject to the provision of the amount of coverage; supplementary to cover gaps in primary coverage; notification to EPA of policy modification, cancellation, expiration, intent to renew, renewal or non-renewal and expiration dates; indicates whether the insurance policy is maintained or renewed for the EPA to determine if it is acceptable or if a replacement policy is required; the final insurance policy or the insurance certificate; and proof of premium payment.
Section 12.5 states that “the licensee shall provide from the parent company or affiliates…one or more legally binding agreements to EPA committing to provide adequate financial resources to pay…their respective obligations. if EEPGL does not”.
What the above says and signed by Mr. Henson is that the insurance must be obtained by EEPGL, as well as the parent companies Exxon, CNOOC and Hess must provide a written agreement guaranteeing coverage of all costs above beyond the insurance value. If insurance plus parent company guarantee to cover all costs beyond the insurance value isn’t unlimited/full coverage, I don’t know what is! And by the way, editor, the deal guarantee doesn’t cost Exxon a penny, because it’s just a guarantee. Another editor, just in case Mr. Routledge didn’t realize, he also signed the exact language copied into the modified Payara, Yellowtail and Liza 1 permits. What other documents does he request?
He continues to try to fool people with his false line that Exxon is in compliance with the laws and regulations of the country, but continues to dishonestly evade the question of why he operates Liza 1 and 2 without meeting the requirements legal requirements listed in these permits. So, editor, can Mr. Routledge explain how Exxon is in compliance with the laws of the land when Exxon operates outside of these legal requirements; but if he still thinks that Exxon is, in the name of transparency, which he now professes to respect, please make public, the insurance policies and parent company guarantee to meet the legally required license conditions to prove his case.
Finally, since Mr Routledge has now publicly stated that he has ‘always been open and transparent’ but we have been too dumb to notice, we are now giving him another chance to prove us all wrong by publishing to the least once a month: the amount of oil produced; the quantities of water produced, seawater injected and produced water discharged into the sea; and the quantities of gas produced, re-injected and used for other purposes. We look forward to this act of goodwill transparency that Mr. Routledge now proclaims, and wish to remind Mr. Routledge once again, that all requested information and data belongs to the people of Guyana, not Exxon.
Dr. Vincent Adams