Humble Dogs

That they might see with their eyes, hear with their ears, understand with their hearts. Matthew 13:15b

Archive for the tag “oil”

Obama Can Force Oil Sands to Clean Up Their Act

Keystone XL pipeline now awaits the decision from President Obama for the go ahead.

The pipeline, when completed would carry oil sands heavy crude oil from Alberta to refineries on the Gulf Coast. It is well documented that the extraction and consumption of the oil would significantly worsen global warming and contribute to increasing overall environmental and ecological damage to a vast part of northern Canada.

Governor of Nebraska Backs Route for Pipeline
By JOHN M. BRODER
Published: January 22, 2013

WASHINGTON — The governor of Nebraska on Tuesday approved a revised route through the state for the Keystone XL pipeline, setting up a decision for President Obama that pipeline opponents say will be a crucial test of his intentions on climate change. Read more…

Advertisements

Rants of a Christian Enviromentalist

I am an environmentalist. I believe all people have a role to play in protecting the environment and the eco-systems we live in. Even more so for us who claim a dedication to Christian principles. We were created by God to be stewards of all He created.

Earth

View from Space

Genesis 1: 28; And God blessed them, and God said unto them, “Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moves upon the earth”.

It is that word, “DOMINION”, which means REGENCY. God granted us regency in His creation. We, mankind, are to, use the land, the seas and all God has abundantly supplied but, we are to watch over it, take care of it, and return it to Him unsullied. God has asked us to be conservationists, environmentalists, ecologists and take care of this earth. Perhaps, at least in part, it is our failure to look after this earth that the final act of the creation story is to create a new earth, one fit for His Holy Kingdom.

I will admit, I get very judgmental over environment issues, especially towards those whose authority is to look after the affairs of our Country, Province/State, or community. Yes, I am referring to politicians  I live in Alberta, Canada and I realize that even though I am retired, much of the benefits I enjoy come from the resource revenues created by the Oil Sands industry. Some call it the Tar Sands, probably a more fit name but, that is another debate.

The last thing I want in this matter is to have the Oil Sands shut down. That would serve no one. What I would like to see is proper management applied to this resource. Both the Federal and Provincial Governments know the problems with pollution, they have conducted numerous studies, they know the solutions and yet due to heavy lobbying pressure by the oil companies involved, they choose to do nothing environmentally constructive. They boast about the monies the project brings in, they spread economic fear that unnecessary meddling will create economic disaster.

What I don’t understand is why the laws to protect the environment and ecology which are already in place are not enforced over the industries involved with the oil sands.

Several months ago a government authorized study conducted by the Univ. of Alberta confirmed that pollution, directly attributed to oil sands operations, is having a detrimental effect on the environment and the ecology in a wide path, mainly east,(prevailing winds) surrounding the Fort McMurray, Wood Buffalo region. These reports were not released to the public and scientists who worked on the report were put under gag order. The report was eventually leaked by a subordinate several weeks later.

I wrote to my Member of Parliament, Blaine Calkins, on this matter and received this reply:

Dear Mr. Tilley,

Thank you for your letter concerning the recent study done by Environment Canada that confirmed the studies done by Dr. Schindler.

As Environment Canada noted in their report, the levels of containments found in the samples were consistent with contaminants that have been found in areas with no development. Consequently, Environment Canada has decided to do further tests in an effort to better understand the levels of contaminants in the Oil Sands area.

“…the levels of contaminants found in the samples were consistent with contaminants that have been found in areas with no development.” Of course they are consistent – they are the same contaminants blown there by winds coming off the oil sands.
In other words; “We will continue to do nothing.”

I also asked him about the ‘Gag Order’ muzzling the UofA scientists, he replied:

With regards to your comments about monitoring reports being kept secret, and scientists being ‘gagged’, it simply isn’t happening. The process of making reports public is not new, and has not been changed by our Government.

OK, Let’s hear from the scientists themselves after the report was leaked. Watch the following news video.

Government Hides Proof of Oil Sands Contamination
http://www.albertaprimetime.com/Stories.aspx?pd=4450

Original Air Date: Monday, November 05, 2012
The public is learning Environment Canada knew of oil sands contamination and muzzled its scientists. What fallout will those revelations cause?

We speak with David Schindler, international acclaimed and outspoken environmental biologist from the University of Alberta.

Tar Pit #3

Tar Pit #3

This week a new report was released by Queen’s University, Kingston, Ontario This time the report was published directly to major news sources. This report confirms the findings of the previous UofA reports of last November.

Oil sands development polluting Alberta lakes: study 
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/oil-sands-development-polluting-alberta-lakes-study/article7014184/

Oil Sands Polluting Area Lakes 
http://thechronicleherald.ca/canada/393673-report-oilsands-polluting-area-lakes

Oil sands pollution ‘clearly evident’, government-funded study says 
http://business.financialpost.com/2013/01/07/government-funded-study-concludes-toxic-hydrocarbons-from-oil-sands-pollute-lakes/

Margaret Munro, Postmedia News | Jan 7, 2013

Leading federal and academic scientists have uncovered “compelling” evidence that Alberta’s oil sands operations have been sending toxins into the atmosphere for decades.

Industry’s role as a decades-long contributor of PAHs to oil sands lake ecosystems is now clearly evident
The team has found “striking” increases in contaminants known as polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) at the bottom of six lakes up to 90 kilometres from the massive oil sands operations in northeastern Alberta.

PAHs began to climb in the lake sediments in the 1970s and are now up to 23 times higher than 1960 levels. It says the increased PAHs coincided with oil sands development and the compounds have a distinct “petrogenic” fingerprint different from PAHs generated by natural phenomenon like fire.

Levels of the toxins have almost tripled since the 1960s in Namur Lake, the most remote lake tested. It is about 90 kilometres northwest of oil sands operations in a provincial park known for its fishing. The PAHs are up to 23 times higher in the other lakes, which are within 35 kilometres of the oil sands operations.

“Given the planned expansion of the oil sands, the trend will likely accelerate in future,” says co-author John Smol, a Canada research chair in Environmental Change at Queen’s University.

Government and industry response is; “that many pollutants found in the lakes and rivers of northeastern Alberta are naturally occurring and leached from the bitumen deposits themselves.”

In other words; “We choose to do nothing.”

Alberta Oilsands #1 GHG Emitter

The Province of Alberta is ranked #1 of all jurisdictions, provinces and states, in North America for GHG emissions.
World wide, the highest source GHG emitter is the US military. The single entity highest source GHG emitter in the world is the Alberta oil sands.

The Governments of Canada and Alberta try to downplay the oil sands role as a GHG emitter.

This from: OilSands-GHG Emissions

“GHG Emissions – a shared challenge
Regardless of the source, GHG emissions are a shared global challenge. In 2009, GHG emissions from European electricity generation, which make up about a quarter of EU GHG emisions, were nearly 30 times greater than GHG emissions from the oil sands. On a per-country basis, GHG emissions from electricity generation were nearly seven times greater in Germany than emissions from the oil sands, while GHG emissions from electricity generation in the United Kingdom and Poland were each about three times greater.

Oilsands make up 6.5 percent of Canada’s emissions: 0.1 percent of global emissions.
Extracting bitumen and other heavy crude oil requires more energy than the production of lighter and more accessible forms of crude oil. This tends to make heavy oil production more emissions-intensive per barrel of oil produced.”

That is like saying, “My contribution to litter is so minor when compared to all the litter on the street, why should I recycle?”

Panda Pipeline

Panda Pipeline.

Stop the Northern Gateway Pipeline

I will admit that I am not against pipelines. Canada has thousands of kilometers of pipelines criss-crossing this great country of ours. I am against this Northern Gateway Pipeline. Not the pipeline as a means to deliver crude oil, but to the tanker traffic it would bring to the BC North Coast and the ecological, environmental and economical tragedy that will inevitably happen.

British Columbia would absorb all the risks involved with virtually no benefits. 40 permanent jobs, that’s it. Billions in ecological damage, millions in environmental clean-up. Enbridge states that when an oil spill does occur, it is not the oil companies liability. Canada would have to sue the shipping company for causing it. That is copping out.

Help put a Stop to the Northern Gateway Pipeline!

First:
The proposed Northern Gateway Pipeline requires overturning the current federal-provincial moratorium on oil tanker traffic along the coast of British Columbia, and will threaten fragile ecosystems, wilderness and landscapes, including the Great Bear Rainforest.

The Green Party of Canada has a petition to help stop the pipeline from going ahead. Download this petition, have as many people as possible to sign it, and mail it – postage free – to either her Ottawa or Sidney offices. With as few as 25 signatures, Elizabeth can present your petition to the government in the House of Commons.

Please return all signed petitions, postage free, to:

Hill Office
Confederation Building, Room 518
Ottawa, Ontario
K1A 0A6
Tel: 613.996.1119
Fax: 613.996.0850
Riding Office
1 – 9711 Fourth Street
Sidney, British Columbia
V8L 2Y8
Tel: 250.657.2000
Fax: 250.657.2004

Please email elizabeth.may@parl.gc.ca or call 613-996-1119 if you have any questions.

Axis of Oil

“Axis of Oil” Poses Significant Problems and Questions for Canada

Prime Minister’s Focus on Money and Markets Ignores Issues of Energy and National Security, Human Rights, Syria, and More

“Canadians simply cannot and should not make the dramatic economic and social shifts Harper is aggressively orchestrating without more information.”

Hilites:

  • Canada becoming a colony of China.
  • Shipping jobs off-shore.
  • Compromises Canada’s foreign Policy.
  • During the 2008 federal election campaign, Stephen Harper promised he wouldn’t export raw crude to countries with weaker environmental standards than Canada, protecting Canadian jobs.
  • The oil and gas sector already has nearly two times the amount of foreign investment compared to the average in other areas of our economy with twice the percentage of profits leaving Canada.
  • Concerning Chinese oil sands investments, estimates vary because of the lack of transparency, but it’s at least $12 billion and as much as $20 billion.
  • Not only jobs will be lost, but energy security and even national sovereignty are at stake. As Anthony Campbell, former head of the Intelligence Assessment Secretariat of the Privy Council Office, has pointed out: “We are sitting ducks.” We are losing our ability to control the oil sands and our energy future.
  • Even Enbridge has admitted that its pipeline will be of no benefit to Canada if it doesn’t secure the so-called “Asian Premium” – a higher crude price.
  • Canada will slowly become a petro state with all the negatives we’ve witnessed around the world.
  • The absurdity of so-called “Ethical Oil” is made transparent when you consider our increased, unquestioning partnership with China. After all, China is also working closely with Iran, Syria, and Saudi Arabia. This fact also makes a mockery of any government concerns about “foreign” influence among opponents of the Enbridge/China pipeline.

Axis of oil?
February 9, 2012 15:38
John Robson looks at Elizabeth May’s alarmist language when it comes to the oilsands.

Wildrose reaction to May’s comments
February 9, 2012 15:49
Krista Erickson speaks with Alberta Wildrose leader Danielle Smith about the Alberta budget and Green Party leader Elizabeth May’s latest oil comments.
Says May’s agenda is to shut down the oil sands and tankers must be allowed to travel in BC waters.

Open Question

How can the Enbridge Northern Gateway Project continue, and continue spending millions of taxpayers dollars on a Joint Review Panel, while:

1. There is a moratorium on crude oil tankers in the BC North Coast in place. This moratorium must be set aside first both by the BC Legislature and the Government of Canada.

2. BC has pledged to uphold the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, which was adopted by the UN General Assembly in 2007 and endorsed by the Harper government in 2010 which says; states should obtain from indigenous peoples “their free and informed consent prior to the approval of any project affecting their lands or territories and other resources, particularly in connection with the development, utilization or exploitation of mineral, water or other resources.” Without First Nations consent, there can be no approval of the pipeline project.

3. The BC Government and the Premier of BC have an obligation to act accordingly on the First Nations behalf under the Coastal Reconciliation Protocol signed Dec. 10, 2009. Unless the BC Government and Premier Christy Clark abandone this Protocol, they are committed to act on behalf of the Coastal First Nations who are also signatories of this bill.

4. The transport of Alberta crude by tanker through the Port of Kitamat has been “dis-allowed” by all 9 of the Coastal First Nations who need to give consent to the project first before it can go ahead. The declaration to not allow the pipeline through their lands has been ratified 100% by all Coastal First Nations involved.

By Law then, the conclusion must be:
In respect to First Nations Rights and Law, in respect of the BC Governments obligation to First Nations people, and to uphold the Laws of Canada, our Prime Minister and the Government of Alberta must abandon their governments position that the Pipeline is “Beneficial for Canada” and put an end to Enbridge pipeline and export ambitions via the Gateway project.

To allow this project to continue is inviting 5 to 10 years of lawsuits and litigation costing several billion. Or is this what the law community wants?

Therefore the Enbridge Gateway Pipeline project is effectively dead. Shut down the Joint Review Panel and save the millions of dollars it is costing. Unless of couse the PM has been taking lessons from Chinese politics and is about to disregard Canadian Law and trample on peoples rights.

Gateway Pipeline a NO-GO

The Enbridge Gateway Pipeline project is dead.

Stop all proceedings trying to ram this project through, it is over. The pipe dream of the Chinese to export Alberta crude through the Port of Kitamat has been “dis-allowed” by all 9 of the Coastal First Nations who need to give consent to the project first before it can go ahead. The declaration to not allow the pipeline through their lands has been ratified 100% by all Coastal First Nations involved.

The United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, which was adopted by the UN General Assembly in 2007 and endorsed by the Harper government in 2010 says; states should obtain from indigenous peoples “their free and informed consent prior to the approval of any project affecting their lands or territories and other resources, particularly in connection with the development, utilization or exploitation of mineral, water or other resources.”

To respect First Nations Rights and Law, our Prime Minister must uphold Canadian Law and abandon his governments position that Enbridge is “Beneficial for Canada” and put an end to their pipeline and export ambitions via the Gateway project.

The BC Government and the Premier of BC have an obligation to act accordingly on the First Nations behalf under the Coastal Reconciliation Protocol. Several First Nations, including the Gitga’at First Nation, Heiltsuk Nation, Kitasoo Indian Band, Metlakatla First Nation, Wuikinuxv Nation and the Nuxalk Nation, and Premier Gordon Campbell originally signed the Coastal Reconciliation Protocol on Dec. 10, 2009. The Coastal Reconciliation Protocol provides First Nations people with an additional venue to implement decisions within their respective Territories and negotiate to manage lands and resources within Ancestral Territory to accommodate shared cultural, social, environmental and economic interests.

From: Wet’suwet’en Hereditary Chief (Chief Na’Moks, Tsayu, Beaver Clan, Head Chief of Tsayu)

“We stand firm in our opposition to this (Enbridge Gateway Pipeline) proposed project. Our law states that if and when the high Chiefs of our Nation (encompassing the entire 22,000 square Kilometers of unceded, undefeated, non Treaty Lands) make a declaration of opposition, then this is final law and cannot be broken.” “The Wet’suwet’en have said no! This is the final word that our people will say on this. My wish is that Government/Industry would learn about the Wet’suwet’en, and understand that they have no right to go against the Decree of the Wet’suwet’en Hereditary Chiefs/Clan/Members.”

Enbridge is a corporation who is trying to buy off the Chiefs and First Nation people instead of respecting their rights and traditions.

From: Sierra Club of BC Foundation

In March, 2010, Coastal First Nations issued a declaration banning tar sands crude oil tanker traffic from their territories. In making the declaration, the Haida, Heiltsuk, Kitasoo, Haisla, Gitga’at and other First Nations exercised their ancestral laws, rights and responsibilities over the waters and lands of their traditional territories.

“As Nations of the Central and North Pacific Coast and Haida Gwaii, it is our custom to share our wealth and live in harmony with the broader human community,” said the declaration. “However, we will not bear the risk to these lands and waters caused by the proposed Enbridge Northern Gateway pipeline and crude oil tanker traffic.”

Gitga’at Nation spokesman Cameron Hill says,

“The Gitga’at are of the sea and we have always known that oil & gas tankers in these waters were a horrible and frightening idea.” “It’s all about risks and benefits. For the Gitga’at it’s all risk and no benefits, and for Enbridge it’s all benefits and no risk”.

Haida declaration reads:

“Our culture, our heritage is the child of respect and intimacy with the land and sea. Like the forests, the roots of our people are intertwined such that the greatest troubles cannot overcome us. We owe our existence to Haida Gwaii … the living generation accepts the responsibility to ensure that our heritage is passed on to following generations.”

Haisla Nation chief councilor Ellis Ross explains,

“We don’t feel the benefits of the Northern Gateway pipeline project outweigh the risks to land and sea.”

Heiltsuk Nation Marilyn Slett, elected Chief Councillor, stated;

“We stand behind our coastal First Nation neighbors and the declaration that we all signed that ban oil tankers on our coast.” “We will never support the Enbridge project and we will never support a project that has the potential to destroy our way of life.”

March 23, 2010
First Nations stood as a unified block this week – on the 21st anniversary of the Exxon Valdez oil spill – to announce their opposition to a proposed Tar Sands pipeline.

“We will protect ourselves and the interests of future generations with everything we have because one major oil spill on the coast of British Columbia would wipe us out,” said Gerald Amos, Director, Coastal First Nations, an alliance of nine First Nations. “This bountiful and globally significant coastline cannot bear an oil spill. This is where Enbridge hits a wall.” Read more..

Coastal First Nations from Vancouver Island to the BC/Alaska border are unanimous in their opposition and are joined by the vast majority of First Nations affected along the pipeline route from Kitamaat to Alberta. For more information read the full Coastal First Nations Great Bear Initiative press release. Download Declaration (pdf)

The First Nations call on the Federal Government to protect BC coastal waters and formally legislate the oil tanker traffic moratorium.

Coastal First Nations – Who We Are
Coastal First Nations is an alliance of First Nations on British Columbia’s North and Central Coast and Haida Gwaii. Coastal First Nations includes the Wuikinuxv Nation, Heiltsuk Nation, Kitasoo/Xaixais First Nation, Gitga’at First Nation, Haisla, Metlakatla First Nation, Homalco First Nation, Old Massett Village Council, Skidegate Band Council, and Council of the Haida Nation.

The Coastal First Nations opposition to the pipeline project has been formally endorsed by most all Northern BC First Nations; See list, and many prominant Canadians and environmental groups.
Download An open message to Enbridge CEO Patrick Daniel
Council of the Haida Nation – Old Massett Village Council – Skidegate Band Council – Gitga’at First Nation – Kitasoo/Xaixais First Nation – Metlakatla First Nation – Haisla Nation – Heiltsuk Nation – Wuikinuxv First Nation – Nuxalk Nation – Lax Kw’alaams First Nation – Gitxaala/Kitkatla First Nation – Carrier Sekani Tribal Council – Wet’suwet’en Nation – Nadleh Whut’en First Nation – Nak’azdli Band – Swan River First Nation – Namgis First Nation – Nanwakolas Council – Gitanyow Hereditary Chiefs – Lillooet Tribal Council – St’at’imc Chiefs Council – Canoe Creek Band – Takla First Nation – Siska Indian Band – Kispiox Band Council – Nuu-chah-nulth Tribal Council – Musgamagw Tsawataineuk – Tribal Council

First Nations that have declared opposition to proposed Enbridge tanker & pipeline project British Columbia and Western Canada Current to December 31 2011

Stop tankers from entering Northern BC waters

Say NO to tankers

China Investments in Canada

China backed Kitimat LNG Inc. has already built a LNG port in Emsley Cove, 15 km south of Kitimat which will ship BC LNG to China through Galveston LNG, a company also backed by European and U.S. investors. China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC), China’s largest oil and gas later made a 50-50 partnership agreement with Galveston LNG Inc. and expects the share to reach 22% of the country’s total gas use.

PetroChina owns 20% of Shell’s Groundbirch assets plus bought Arrow Energy and with Sinopec a $2.1bn purchase of Daylight Energy last October. Last year Cnooc, China’s largest offshore oil producer, acquired Opti Canada, a bankrupt oil sands producer, for $2.1bn including it’s debt.

The Chinese owned Sunshine Energy is now offering stock on the Hong Kong exchange rather than in Toronto, this will keep investments in Asia where their will be less concern by investors (for peoples rights and environmental matters). Bank of China International, Deutsche Bank and Morgan Stanley have been seeking potential investors and are now taking formal orders for the shares. Sunshine’s choice of Hong Kong was influenced by some of its key shareholders, which are controlled by the Chinese government. Last March Sunshine raised C$230m (US$227m) from investors including China Life Insurance and Bank of China Group Investment.

China has also invested heavily in Embridge and is using this flagship Canadian company as corporate cover to secure access to Alberta crude. Can we trust our resources to this much Chinese influence. Can we trust Enbridge who haven’t been honest in disclosing their record on pipeline leaks, 170 spills and leaks in the United States since 2002 by Enbridge-owned companies. Yes, Enbridge has a better than industry average but the Transportation Safety Board points out that Enbridge and TransCanada were involved in three out of the four reported cases in Canada 2009/2010.

China’s renewed interest in investing in Canada

“Since the end of 2009, China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC), China Petroleum & Chemical Corporation (Sinopec) and China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC) all have made substantial investments in the Canadian energy sector with a particular focus on the Alberta oil sands development. The China Investment Corporation – a $300 billion sovereign wealth fund – opened its first overseas office in Canada early this year and chose Canada for its only energy sector equity investment.”

“So far the largest single Chinese investment in the Canadian energy sector is the $4.65 billion takeover of ConocoPhillips’ shares by Sinopec in Syncrude Canada Ltd. The Syncrude Group is Canada’s largest oil sands production consortium with most of its production exporting to the US market.”

“The Sinopec-Syncrude deal was followed closely by the successful purchase of 60% of Athabasca Oil Sands Corporation’s MacKay and Dover oil sands projects by PetroChina (a CNPC subsidiary) worth $1.9 billion. China also has invested in Canada’s mining sector since 2009 – notably the $1.7 billion equity investment by the China Investment Corporation in Teck Resources, a Vancouver-based company with both energy and mining assets in North America. In its latest move, CNOOC, the third-largest Chinese national oil company (NOC), acquired the struggling oil sands producer Opti Canada Inc, buying a 35% stake in the joint Nexen-Opti oil sands project in Long Lake, Alberta.”

“The three top Chinese national oil companies made investments in Canada, (2005) including a $2 billion memorandum of understanding between PetroChina and Enbridge to support building the Gateway pipeline system.”

Can China Be Trusted?

Can China Backed Corporations Be Trusted in Environmental Concerns?

China is the world’s second-largest crude importer, after the US, and its voracious appetite for oil has prompted Chinese companies to invest aggressively in non-traditional oil sources including the Alberta oil sands, shale oil and gas, and deep water oil reserves. While oil sands projects have come under criticism in Canada and the US because of their environmental impact and carbon emissions, Chinese companies have few qualms about investing in them. China has little or no qualms about polluting even in their own country or displacing citizens for economic gain or industrial expansion.

See: Interactive Pollution Map Remember back to the Olympic Games in Beijing when China had to curb industry in order to maintain air quality satisfactory to competition by IOC standards.

See: Three Gorges Dam May Displace Millions More. The resettlement, which local leaders want to complete by 2020, would bring the total number of people displaced by the Three Gorges project to 5.3 million.

See: Industrial pollution leading cause of urban smog a group of Beijing NGOs have listed industrial emissions as the main contributing factor to air pollution in China’s cities.

The United Nations’ latest Human Development Report (2006) “has cited China on worsening water pollution and its failure to restrict heavy polluters. More than 300 million people, almost a quarter of the population lack access to clean drinking water and more than half of the country’s water resources have been severely tainted by pollution.”

When industry is allowed to operate in China with few concerns toward the environment and public health, like spoiled children in public, they tend to operate with disregard in other countries as well. When it comes to money, corporations will protect the bottom line first.

Can we afford this in Canada? Are Canadian environment protection laws and penalties enough to keep them in check?

Greg Autry, author of ‘Death in China’ on Stephen Harper’s mission to boost trade with China during his current. trip.
Watch This News Commentary

China is after Canada’s resources, and its time to find a way to get it to them, Gordon Houlden from University of Alberta has more.
Watch This News Commentary

Oil sales, human rights on Stephen Harper’s agenda in China.
Watch This News Commentary

You hear a lot about China’s growing economy and superpower status, but Gordon Chang foresees dark days ahead
Watch This News Commentary

Post Navigation