Frontline World

COLOMBIA - The Pipeline War, November, 2002



THE STORY
Synopsis of "The Pipeline War"


CHARTING THE WORLD'S OIL
Interactive Map of Global Oil


WHO'S WHO
Context for the Pipeline War


PHOTO ESSAY
Civilians Caught in the Crossfire


U.S. CORPORATE INTERESTS
Occidental Petroleum, BP, and more


FACTS & STATS
Learn More about Colombia


LINKS & RESOURCES
Human Rights, Colombia's Civil War, Media Resources


MAP


REACT TO THIS STORY

   

Who's Who in the Pipeline War in Colombia
The Colombian GovernmentThe United StatesThe Oil CompaniesTribal GroupsParamilitary Groups
The Colombian GovernmentThe United StatesThe Oil CompaniesTribal GroupsParamilitary GroupsRebel GroupsNarco-TraficantesCiviliansColombia President Alvaro UribeColombia Military
Rebel GroupsNarco-TraficantesCiviliansColombia President Alvaro UribeColombia Military

After U.S.-based Occidental Petroleum Corp. discovered the 1.3 billion-barrel Caño Limón oil field in 1983, the company teamed up with the Colombian government to build this 483-mile-long pipeline from Aruaca to the Caribbean port of Covenas. Although the pipeline's capacity is 240,000 barrels of oil per day, in 2001, the pipeline was closed for 243 days -- fully two-thirds of the year -- because of the rebel bombings. Rebel groups have blown so many holes in Caño Limón over the past two decades of civil war -- roughly 950 bombings at last count -- that Colombians have nicknamed it "the flute."

Increased security efforts in 2002 appear to have reduced the number of attacks, and a recent major shift in U.S. foreign policy toward Colombia is intended to permanently secure what is now seen as an increasingly important future source of U.S. oil imports.


Compiled by Jake Bergman, Kimberly Tabor, Kelly Whalen

Photo: "Tribal Groups"
Credit: Agence France-Presse / Mike Nelson

Photo: "Paramilitary Groups"
Credit: Eros Hoagland

Photo: "Rebel Groups"
Credit: Eros Hoagland

Photo: "Narco-Traficantes"
Credit: Agence France-Presse / Armada Nacional

Photo: "Civilians"
Credit: Eros Hoagland

Photo: "Colombian President Alvaro Uribe"
Credit: United Nations