In a December 10 column, “Nexen sale decision-making seen through different prisms” Andrew Coyne asks:
“Would someone please explain just what it is they think the Chinese are plotting to do to us? Starting with: How does China acquire this death grip on the oilsands in the first place?”
Here is a possible scenario of how China does just that:
The US is in dire financial trouble and much of that is the trillions in debt they owe to and borrowed from China.
Phoenix Energy Holdings Ltd., the Canadian subsidiary of PetroChina Co. Ltd. is already in partnership with TransCanada Corp. to build a new $3-billion, 900,000 barrel-a-day Grand Rapids Pipeline System south to service the US market. Couple that with the existing pipelines, supplies the US all the oil they need. This pipeline is a guaranteed “GO” by Harper and co.
In five years, the US, under a Republican administration, will broker a deal with China which will ease the burden of debt China holds over the USA. Why not forgive a large portion of the debt? China will never collect on it anyway. Besides, they need their biggest trade customer to remain fiscally solvent.
Part of that deal is to supply the US with cheap bitumen crude from Canada which will force the barrel price of oil sands crude to below $50.
At this price, Chinese companies will be the only producers who can afford to continue oil sands operations.
In exchange for cheap Canadian oil, China will import crude oil from Alaska, also at a discounted price; better oil, shorter distance.
The Northern Gateway Pipeline through BC is started but never completed. Many investors abandon the oil sands for lack of profitability.
Golden opportunity for China to take over under Harper’s “exceptional circumstances.”
Safety will decrease, pay will decrease, exodus of Canadian workers, Chinese workers brought in as “temporary”.
New energy technology will replace majority of fossil fuels within 20 years, possibly nuclear and thermal.
Over $400 Billion projected costs to clean up after the oil sands bitumen demand runs out in 20 years.
The only promise that the Conservatives will be able to say they kept is the 20 year promise to reduce fossil fuel greenhouse gases.