The high-profile Limon-Covenas oil pipelines near the Venezuelan border are the main targets for criminals, with stolen oil being sold on international markets via falsified documentation.
These thefts are primarily occurring in remote areas, where the local economies are dominated by coca cultivation and cocaine production. The stolen oil is often turned into a crude form of gasoline, used in the cocaine production process.
However, this is leading to significant environmental damage, with oil contaminating local land and water sources. The rise in petroleum theft, estimated at around 3 thousand five hundred barrels of oil per day, is causing significant strain on an already burdened industry.
This has direct and indirect effects on the people of Colombia, as it impacts employment opportunities and economic stability.