Oil Sands Truth: Shut Down the Tar Sands

Alberta (& Saskatchewan) Tar Sands

Alberta (& Saskatchewan) Tar Sands

Alberta Tar Sands is a category limited to the location and production of tar sand bitumen, an area the size of the state of Florida in northern Alberta province. The giant processing plants near Fort McMurray where the land itself is strip mined as well as the primarily "in situ" in-ground steam separation/production and extraction plants in the Peace and Cold Lake Regions, all in Alberta, are the "Ground Zero" of the single largest industrial gigaproject ever proposed in human history.

The process of removing the tar from the sand involves incredible amounts of energy from clean-burning natural gas (with nuclear proposed along side), tremendous capital costs during build up, incredibly high petroleum prices to protect investments, and the largest single industrial contribution to climate change in North America. Production also involves the waste of fresh water from nearby lakes, rivers and aquifers that have already created toxic tailing ponds visible from outer space. None of the land strip mined has yet to be certified as reclaimed. It takes 4 tonnes of soil to produce one barrel of oil. The tar sands are producing over 1.2 million barrels of oil a day on average. The oil companies, Canada and the United States governments are proposing to escalate production to 5 million barrels, almost all destined for American markets-- and lower environmental standards while doing so. They also would need to violate the national and human rights of many indigenous nations who are rightly concerned about many dire social, environmental and economic repercussions on their communities.

To get the needed energy supplies, diluent for the bitumen and diverted freshwater to produce and then to transport the flowing heavy bitumen for refining would require massive new infrastructure and pipeline building from three different time zones in the Arctic, across British Columbia and through Alberta in a criss-cross pattern, into pipelines to such destinations as California, China, Oklahoma, Louisiana, Ontario, Illinois, Wisconsin and Texas. This entire project is now estimated at over $170 billion dollars. And after the whole process described so far, only then will all this dirty petroleum get burned and expel greenhouse gasses into the air causing further climate change.

Alberta Tar Sands is a category limited to the location and production of tar sand bitumen, an area the size of the state of Florida in northern Alberta province. The giant processing plants near Fort McMurray where the land itself is strip mined as well as the primarily "in situ" in-ground steam separation/production and extraction plants in the Peace and Cold Lake Regions, all in Alberta, are the "Ground Zero" of the single largest industrial gigaproject ever proposed in human history. The process of removing the tar from the sand involves incredible amounts of energy from clean-burning natural gas (with nuclear proposed along side), tremendous capital costs during build up, incredibly high petroleum prices to protect investments, and the largest single industrial contribution to climate change in North America. Production also involves the waste of fresh water from nearby lakes, rivers and aquifers that have already created toxic tailing ponds visible from outer space. None of the land strip mined has yet to be certified as reclaimed. It takes 4 tonnes of soil to produce one barrel of oil. The tar sands are producing over 1.2 million barrels of oil a day on average. The oil companies, Canada and the United States governments are proposing to escalate production to 5 million barrels, almost all destined for American markets-- and lower environmental standards while doing so. They also would need to violate the national and human rights of many indigenous nations who are rightly concerned about many dire social, environmental and economic repercussions on their communities. To get the needed energy supplies, diluent for the bitumen and diverted freshwater to produce and then to transport the flowing heavy bitumen for refining would require massive new infrastructure and pipeline building from three different time zones in the Arctic, across British Columbia and through Alberta in a criss-cross pattern, into pipelines to such destinations as California, China, Oklahoma, Louisiana, Ontario, Illinois, Wisconsin and Texas. This entire project is now estimated at over $170 billion dollars. And after the whole process described so far, only then will all this dirty petroleum get burned and expel greenhouse gasses into the air causing further climate change.

Shell hits back at 'carbon bubble' claims

Shell hits back at 'carbon bubble' claims

Oil and gas company publishes 20 page document telling investors that climate laws will not leave it with 'stranded assets'

John Vidal
theguardian.com, Tuesday 20 May 2014

Canada’s $207,000 tar sands ad: Putting a price on deception

Canada’s $207,000 oil sands ad: Putting a price on deception

Eric Reguly

The Globe and Mail

Published Friday, May. 09 2014

The ad in The New Yorker is pretty, if not quite arresting. The full-page photo on the inside back cover – prime real estate in the United States’ leading upmarket magazine – features a pristine river meandering through a lush mountain valley, untouched by humanity. It is not a tourism ad. It is designed to convince influential Americans that the Keystone XL pipeline is environmentally safe, even desirable.

Tar Sands May Have Caused Sickness That Forced Families From Homes, Canadian Regulator Says

Tar Sands May Have Caused Sickness That Forced Families From Homes, Canadian Regulator Says

By Emily Atkin
April 1, 2014

Karla and Alain’s Labrecque's children, now living happily and healthily in British Columbia after a year of unexplained sickness in Peace River, Alberta.

Published with permission of Karla and Alain Labrecque

Karla and Alain’s Labrecque’s children, now living happily and healthily in British Columbia after a year of unexplained sickness in Peace River, Alberta. Published with permission of Karla and Alain Labrecque

New York Times writer credits Vancouver Observer investigation into tar sands spying

New York Times writer credits Vancouver Observer investigation into oil sands spying

In an op/ed piece "Is Canada Tarring Itself?" - a famed US author links to Vancouver Observer's work exposing the Harper government's extensive spying of groups opposed to the oil sands.

Mychaylo Prystupa
Posted: Apr 1st, 2014

Plagued With High Cancer Rates, One Tar Sands Community’s Eight Year Quest For Answers

Plagued With High Cancer Rates, One Tar Sands Community’s Eight Year Quest For Answers

By Emily Atkin on April 2, 2014

The global Transition tipping point has arrived - vive la révolution

The global Transition tipping point has arrived - vive la révolution
Nafeez Ahmed, The Guardian, Mar 18, 2014

A new post-carbon era dawns as the old fossil fuel system dies. It's time to step up.

Last Friday, I posted an exclusive report about a new NASA-backed scientific research project at the US National Socio-Environmental Synthesis Center (Sesync) to model the risks of civilisational collapse, based on analysis of the key factors involved in the rise and fall of past civilisations.

TransCanada's Energy East Pipeline for Export, With Little Return for Canadians

TransCanada's Energy East Pipeline for Export, With Little Return for Canadians

OTTAWA, March 18, 2014 /CNW/ - A new report shows that nearly all of the 1.1 million barrels a day of crude oil the proposed Energy East pipeline would carry would be exported unrefined. The report, TransCanada's Energy East Pipeline: For Export, Not Domestic Gain, shows eastern Canadian refineries would process only a small amount of crude from Energy East, given that they already rely substantially on two other North American sources, with a third source imminent.

Alberta Regulator Quietly Halts Steam Bitumen Mining Near Fort Mac

Alberta Regulator Quietly Halts Steam Bitumen Mining Near Fort Mac
by Andrew Nikiforuk, originally published by The Tyee | March 13, 2014

The Alberta energy regulator has suspended the fastest-growing source of bitumen production around Fort McMurray due to concerns about fracturing the region’s cap rock.

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