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Fluye el petróleo, sangra la selva

-Graffiti en Quito - Ecuador

Keep the oil in the soil and the coal in the hole

-Conference of Polluters - COP17 - Durban 2011

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Brazilian pre-salt expansion: corruption and the petroleum industry

Marcelo Calazans, Tamra Gilbertson and Daniela Meirelles*

In 2005, the Brazilian oil company, Petrobras discovered hydrocarbons below the geological salt layer in the Tupi field located in the Atlantic Ocean off-shore of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. In 2006 a consortium of Petrobras, BG Group, and Petrogal drilled in the Tupi field and discovered an estimated 5-8 billion barrels of oil equivalent resources in a pre-salt zone. The pre-salt oil and gas lie below an approximate 2000m deep layer of salt, which is below an approximate 2000m layer of rock under 2000-3000m of the Atlantic. Further exploration found hydrocarbon deposits in the pre-salt layer extended through the Santos, Campos, and Espírito Santo basins located off-shore of Rio de Janeiro and Espírito Santo states.

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* Marcelo Calazans is the Director of FASE-ES, Brasil, Tamra Gilbertson is the co-Director of Carbon Trade Watch, and Daniela Meirelles is a researcher of FASE-ES, Brasil. The authors wish to thank Nicolas Kosoy and Leah Temper for the helpful comments.