Ecopetrol operations affected by protests

BOGOTA, May 16, 2017 – On Monday, Colombia’s Ecopetrol was forced to close 92 wells due to protests by the local community in Meta Province.

Angered by the proposed changes to the company procedures for hiring from the local workforce, residents from the Acacias municipality staged protests and tinkered with some of the wells across the Castilla and Chichimene fields.


“The valves of several wells were opened, which resulted in a crude oil spill that could not be controlled because demonstrators prevented access by emergency crews,” Ecopetrol said in a statement.

Under the previous guidelines, only residents in the immediate vicinity of the fields would be eligible for work. A new decree by the government states that Ecopetrol can now hire from a wider area within the municipality.

The 92 wells were producing a combined 10,000 bopd prior to closure.

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