Welcome to Know Your Resources, the news site of Equitable Origin which covers issues relating to energy, the environment, human rights and social innovation. We seek to share the diverse perspectives of our entire team as well as of leading experts across the sectors and disciplines with which we engage.

Jhon Wajai: The EO100 Standard as a Tool for Empowering Indigenous Communities

Aug. 21, 2014 | Written by Jhon Wajai

Jhon Wajai

Jhon Wajai is a member of the Shuar Indigenous People of Ecuador and Peru. He provides technical and political support to Indigenous Peoples’ organizations in the Amazon region, including CONFENIAE, Confederation of Indigenous Nationalities of the Ecuadorian Amazon, and COICA, Coordinator of Indigenous Organizations of the Amazon River Basin. After participating in the Indigenous Community Workshop in San Pablo, Ecuador on July 31, he wrote the following refection on Indigenous Peoples' rights and the EO100TM Standard.

For indigenous peoples, the past remains like a footprint in history, providing context and allowing for deep reflection as we face new realities and challenges. As our leaders prepare for transitions and begin new discussions, they attempt to meet the needs of new generations with dignity, and call into action the rights that have been granted through local, national and international legislation.

Communities ...

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Indigenous Community Workshop: San Pablo, Ecuador

Aug. 12, 2014 | Written by Pablo Yepez & Sofia Castello

On July 31 and August 1, 2014, Equitable Origin was invited to participate in a workshop with COICA and CONFENIAE, indigenous organizations of the Ecuadorian Amazon, to discuss best practices in the oil & gas industry and potential uses of the EO100 Standard. The workshop took place in the Siekopai community called San Pablo de Kantesiayá, in the province of Sucumbíos in Ecuador. Participation in the workshop was part of EO's ongoing engagement with communities affected by oil & gas development to raise awareness of the EO100 Standard and to collect experiences and concerns that can help improve the Standard.

About 30 people attended the workshop, including representatives of the Siekopai, Siona, Cofán, Wuaorani, Kichwa, Shuar and Achuar indigenous nationalities. The aim of these meetings was to gather communities interested in and affected by the social and environmental impacts of oil & gas development, and introduce them to the potential uses of the EO100 Standard in forming a basis for negotiating better practices.

On the first day of the meeting, Equitable Origin's Senior Advisor Dr. René Ortiz, an expert on the oil & gas industry and former OPEC Secretary General, presented on technological advances that can can reduce negative impacts on the environment. He advocated for understanding and recognizing human rights, land rights and resource rights, and spoke of the EO100 Standard as a pioneering initiative that can help indigenous organizations participate in and benefit from resource development taking place in their territories.

On the second day of the workshop, technical representatives of Equitable Origin, CONFENIAE and COICA explained the structure of the EO100 Standard and the collaborative process and stakeholder engagement that went into creating it. Organizations and communities have adopted the EO100 ...

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Oil & Water screens at Rhode Island International Film Festival

Aug. 8, 2014 | Written by

Rhode Island International Film Festival

An enthusiastic audience collected in Providence, RI at 2:30pm on August 7, 2014 to watch the screening of Oil & Water at the Rhode Island International Film Festival.

EO’s President and Co-Founder David Poritz participated in a Q&A session after the film with director Laurel Spellman Smith, answering questions that ranged from updates on the progress of Equitable Origin and the Cofan Survival Fund, to the best ways of changing oil companies’ practices. Poritz discussed the benefits of the EO100 Standard in incentivizing oil companies and providing a choice for consumers that allows them to support best practices.

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Indigenous Community Workshop: Applying the EO100 Standard in Orito, Colombia

July 14, 2014 | Written by Pablo Yepez & Ben Vila

On April 9th and 10th of 2014, in the Colombian municipality of Orito, Putumayo, with the participation of representatives from chapters and councils of the Indigenous Zone Organization of Putumayo (OZIP), Equitable Origin inaugurated the Awareness and Empowerment Workshop for the use and application of the EO100TM Standard as a useful tool for indigenous organizations in managing hydro-carbon activities within their territories.

In total, 71 representatives belonging to various indigenous nations including Awá, Inga, Kamentzá, Pastos, Pijaos, Cofanes, Embera y Murui attended the two-day workshop. The representatives of the different indigenous organizations performed a welcome ritual to encourage a sprit of good reason among all the participants and to usher in a spirit of productivity to the meetings.

The workshops lasted for two days during which the principles and guidelines of the EO100 Standard were reviewed with the objective ...

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Meeting Colombia's Mayors

June 3, 2014 | Written by Sofia Castello

On May 21, 2014, Fernando Benalcazar, EO’s VP of Global Implementation and VP Latin America, gave a presentation to mayors of the Colombian municipalities most affected by oil and gas exploration and production. He was invited to give this presentation by Dr. Gilberto Toro, Executive Director of the Colombian Federation of Municipalities. In the presentation, he outlined the benefits that application of the EO100 Standard could bring to these areas, including more stability in oil and gas projects and fewer interruptions. The presentation was received positively, and mayors were given all the pertinent information to contact Santiago Pastrana, EO’s representative in Colombia, regarding the possibility of applying the EO100 Standard to projects near their municipalities.

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Equitable Origin Achieves Full Membership in the ISEAL Alliance

May 2, 2014 | Written by Equitable Origin

The ISEAL Alliance has approved Equitable Origin’s application to progress from associate to full membership, the highest membership status in ISEAL, following a review of its standard-setting systems and monitoring and evaluation program.

Equitable Origin joined ISEAL in 2013 as an associate member and the first certification initiative in ISEAL to operate in the oil and gas sector. Equitable Origin is a stakeholder-based standard and certification system that aims to promote higher standards of social and environmental responsibility and greater transparency and accountability in oil and gas exploration and production.

As the global association for social and environmental standards, ISEAL works to strengthen the effectiveness and impact of both established and emerging voluntary standards systems in a wide range of sectors, from water, agriculture and forestry to tourism, carbon and fisheries. ISEAL also works with companies, non-profits and governments ...

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Building trust: Social license to operate in the oil and gas industry

April 22, 2014 | Written by Soledad Mills

Jhon Wajai, representative of COICA, sits down with Soledad Mills, our VP of Stakeholder Engagement, at the SPE conference.

Jhon Wajai, representative of COICA, sits down with Soledad Mills, our VP of Stakeholder Engagement, at the SPE conference.

The oil and gas industry faces a serious deficit of public trust. A recent study by the Reputation Institute asked 55,000 consumers to rank the world’s 100 most reputable companies among multinational businesses with a global presence; not a single oil or gas company made the list.

How oil and gas companies can build trust and maintain their social license to operate was a key topic at the Society of Petroleum Engineers (SPE) International Conference on Health, Safety, and the Environment in Long Beach, California, this month. For more than 20 years, the annual gathering has been the premier health, safety and environment conference for the oil and gas exploration and production sector. This year’s theme, “The Journey ...

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Equitable Origin Forms Partnership with Colombia’s Country Brand to Bring Social and Environmental Standards to the South American nation’s Oil and Gas Industry

Aug. 26, 2013 | Written by Equitable Origin

   Amy Blumenthal
   Blumenthal & Associates

New York, NY/Bogota, Colombia, August 26, 2013 – Equitable Origin (EO), the first stakeholder-based, independent social and environmental certification for the oil and gas industry, has formed a landmark partnership with Colombia’s Country Brand, to promote certification of Colombia’s oil and gas production under the EO100™ Standard. The EO100™ Standard is part of the Equitable Origin™ System, which combines a certification standard with a certificate-based market mechanism to reward leadership in corporate social responsibility in the oil and gas industry and provide choice in the marketplace. The goal: to ensure more responsible production practices, to significantly reduce harm to ecosystems, and to create a positive experience for local communities in oil and gas development activities.

“We applaud the country brand’s office for its leadership and commitment to promoting the ...

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Creating Shared Value in the Extractive Industries

Nov. 30, 2012 | Written by


It is broadly accepted that Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is a necessary part of a company’s approach to business and contributes to long-term value for companies that continue to treat their employees well and “give back” to their neighbors. Yet, critics complain that, despite strongly voiced arguments to look through a “CSR lens,” the CSR community has failed to come up with a structured framework that helps managers to link non-core activities to financial performance in everyday decisions. Creating Shared Value, a concept popularized by Harvard’s Michael Porter and Mark Kramer, addresses this criticism head on. CSV expands on the idea of CSR to recognize that broader contributions to social and environmental welfare can also enhance corporate welfare. Porter and Kramer define shared value as “policies and operating practices that enhance the competitiveness of a company while simultaneously ...

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Introduction to Equitable Origin – Webinar Series

Nov. 28, 2012 | Written by Equitable Origin

We are pleased to announce our Webinar Series schedule for the next few months. Join us for a brief introduction to the EO100™ Standard, our certificate trading and ecolabel system. The webinars last for 30-45 minutes, and include plenty of time to answer questions.

We are very proud that with the help and support of our stakeholders we are promoting higher standards in oil and gas exploration and production and that, with our certificate trading and ecolabel system, we will be able to directly recognize and incentivize responsible production practices as we redistribute value to the communities most affected by oil and gas production. To find out more, please register for a webinar here.

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