Oil Sands Truth: Shut Down the Tar Sands

Populations Tar Sands Demands Ignored by Province

some may think it a bit unfair of myself to often change the headlines originated by the newspapers or other news sources the story is fair-used from. But this one begs to be the prototypical reason why that is necessary: The recommendations concluded have only the small or nearly inconsequential ideas approved, and things from water use to moratoriums to land use, to greenhouse gas emissions and more are "not able to reach consensus". In other words, the whole procedure is a giant play, and the consultations are not to be incorporated. "Urged" as a headline, along misleading ideas about how many of the recommendations will be employed in the tar pits leave one the wrong impression about this fake process.


'Orderly' oil sands development urged


Globe and Mail Update

July 25, 2007 at 2:33 PM EDT

CALGARY — Albertans want an “orderly pace” of oil sands development but a special committee created to assess the many issues and canvass citizens said Wednesday it couldn't come to a consensus on the major issues.

However, committee chairman Vance MacNichol urged the Alberta government to take some action “expeditiously” on the big, unresolved questions.

“Changes must be made to how things are being done,” Mr. MacNichol, a retired civil servant who spent 17 years in deputy minister jobs in Alberta, said in the 66-page report issued Wednesday.

The Alberta government said the report was “extremely valuable” as it tries to develop a long-term strategy for the oil sands. Former premier Ralph Klein acknowledged last year that the government had no comprehensive plan for what it called an unexpected oil boom.

Premier Ed Stelmach, who took power in December, has said he is not interested in “touching the brake,” believing the market can regulate itself. The report is full of comments from people who attended meetings held by the special committee and almost all of them are critical of the pace of oil sands development, which one citizen said was “going along at hyperspeed.”

Proposed oil sands development could triple current production in the region by 2015 to three million barrels a day, an investment of roughly $100-billion that would make Alberta one of the world's largest oil producers. Three multibillion-dollar megaprojects have been approved by the provincial energy regulator since last November.

While there was consensus on many questions, such as encouraging new technology, most of the important issues weren't settled, with industry representatives on the committee often disagreeing.

The unresolved issues include:

-whether to set caps on greenhouse gas emissions;

-whether to put a temporary development moratorium in place;

-whether to freeze water licences until a comprehensive water plan is finished;

-whether to limit the amount of land available for oil sands projects;

-whether to set some oil sands profits aside in a long-term fund;

-whether to increase the government take of royalties and taxes from the oil sands.

The 19-member committee included the chair, three provincial civil servants, three municipal officials, two representatives of Ottawa, four aboriginal members, three people from the energy industry and three environmentalists.

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