June 6, 2008 at 3:14 am #3591
US “Green Groups” Warn of Oilsands “poison”
Mike De Souza and David Akin, Canwest News ServicePublished: Wednesday, June 04, 2008
OTTAWA – Environmental activists are warning U.S. lawmakers and consumers that the Canadian oilsands sector is an environmental disaster that is poisoning U.S refineries.
“The environmental costs of tarsand development are staggering,” says a report released Wednesday by the Environmental Integrity Project, a Washington-based group, in the latest salvo in a pitched public relations battle over Western Canada’s resource riches. The report, Tar Sands: Feeding U.S. Refinery Expansions with Dirty Fuel, warned that much of the oil being processed in the United States would soon get dirtier since most refineries were being expanded to handle oil from Western Canada and meet Americans’ growing appetite for fossil fuels.
Alberta’s greenhouse gas emissions are expected to rise by one-third within 10 years in the wake of oilsands expansion.
Tim Fraser/Calgary Herald
“As the rising price of oil has made extraction from Canadian tarsands profitable, U.S. oil refinery expansions to process the extra heavy sour crude from tarsands have come to dominate the refinery landscape,” says the analysis. It notes that more than two-thirds of the expansion of U.S. refining capacity is being tailored to handle the dirtier crude oil from Alberta, as opposed to conventional oil. The analysis also estimates that tarsands capacity in the U.S. will increase by 1.9 million barrels per day, while the cleaner conventional oil refining will decrease by about 300,000 barrels per day.
The study is the latest in a series of reports targeting U.S. decision-makers to convince them to turn away from what environmental groups call “dirty oil” from Canada. It says oilsands production results in the release of harmful pollutants such as sulphur dioxide, hydrogen sulphide, sulphuric acid mist and nitrogen oxide, as well as toxic metals such as lead and nickel compounds.
The report also suggests the “more intensive” process of refining oil sand “may also produce more greenhouse gas.” “I think Americans are just beginning to learn what the tarsands are,” said Matt Price, a climate and energy policy expert from Environmental Defence in Canada who contributed to the report. “You are not really achieving energy security (since) by exploiting tarsands oil you are actually putting in danger your life support system, which is the climate.”
But policy-makers and oil companies are fighting back, doing their best to convince an international audience that Canada is a “green energy superpower” and is responsibly managing oilsands development. For example, Canada’s top federal civil servant took his counterparts from other Commonwealth countries on a tour Saturday of some oilsands facilities in Alberta. Kevin Lynch, the Clerk of the Privy Council, charted a helicopter to ferry other senior civil servants from the United Kingdom, Australia and New Zealand around northern Alberta.
Canwest News Service has learned that the group visited a Syncrude Canada Ltd., facility near Fort McMurray as well as a nearby First Nations reserve. The goal of the visit, said a spokesperson for Lynch’s office, was to demonstrate the scope and complexity of oilsands development as well as the responsible way Canada is developing the resource. Lynch did not respond to an interview request.
Prime Minister Stephen Harper carried that same message to an international audience last week in London. “Canada intends to be not just an energy superpower, but also a clean energy superpower,” Harper told a well-heeled business crowd at a meeting of the Canada-United Kingdom Chamber of Commerce.
And Harper singled out the oilsands in that speech, saying his government has taken a “get tough” approach on oilsands developers. “Our targets (for emissions reductions) in the oilsands go beyond the standards for other industries,” Harper said. In late April, Alberta’s deputy premier Ron Stevens travelled to Washington to take that message directly to members of Congress and U.S. investors. But green groups and political opponents of the Conservative governments in Ottawa and Edmonton say international investors and policy-makers are not getting the whole story.
They say the Harper government’s emissions targets will not bring about absolute reductions in emissions, but only reductions in the relative emissions per each barrel of oil produced. So, even though per-barrel pollution may be decreasing, overall greenhouse gas pollution from the oilsands is estimated to triple over the next decade, according to the latest estimates from Environment Canada.
“Although a new refinery has not been built in the United States for over 30 years, five new refineries are currently under consideration.” The report notes three of the five new refineries would process tar and oil. But it warns the consequences could be devastating, highlighting a recent case of about 500 birds that died after landing on a toxic tailing pond from oilsands operations. The analysis also identifies 17 new expansions of existing facilities and warns the changes could wipe out many trees in the boreal forest that would be cleared to make way for tarsands extraction.
© Canwest News Service 2008
June 6, 2008 at 3:16 am #6802
The Environmental sharks smell blood in the water and chance to steam-roll useless legislation through Congress given the potential political change over. The appeals and challenges to permits for US Refinery expansions or drilling are everywhere but they are not content with taking projects out one at a time now and this news article details a push to take out the entire Canadian Oil Sands production (pure environmental crap filled with junk science as usual – but you need to read it).
Never mind that nearly all Canada’s Conventional Crude is exhausted and this is the only answer they have to meet domestic demands, or huge loss of revenue & tax from exports to US. Or that it removes any chance the US had to get partially free from Mid East, Venezuela & other US hating suppliers.
But what is beyond belief is that it is all being done in the name of a failed process, a concept proven to be a fraud and by a Global mistake that has set environmental gains in the developed countries back 20 years due to the failure to include controls on developing countries!
– Global Warming caused by man has been recently disproved by actual scientist – not the psuedo ones fronted by Environmental groups, although none of liberal press covered the conference or debates.
-A thriving species like the Polar Bear has been put on endangered list for something that wont happen in 50 years just so the ESA can become an enhanced Global Warming tool and back door block on Alaska oil development.
-Kyoto is a horrible failure:
*None of the 18 signature countries made any of their goals, there have been claims two might have but any close inspection at huge overlooks (like UK’s Coal Powered Utility sector) makes it void. They never had a chance for 2012 goals. (US Blue Skye goals however were completely met.)
*Worse still – undeveloped countries like China & Russia have been pushed from number 7 & 9 pollution levels into the number 1 & 4 slots with India moving up quickly as well – all with little to no control on pollution outside of paper documents and nothing set up to correct this worsening situation. This Environmental damage has cancled out the environmental gains in developed countries in past 20 years or more.<Let these Nimby’s clean up that mess before they earn back the right to continue or raise issue against any plant in the developed world>
* The Cap & Trade element of Kyoto is nothing but a trading scam that made only money gains and led to few plant environmental investments (cheaper to buy credits) and the loss of vital global CO2 sinks due limited offsets.
Yet here are the Environmentalist & their lobby machine acting like everything was huge success & with help media pushing the same slogan lies which driving crazy Carbon Tax, Cap & Trade, and Global Warming / Anti-fossil fuel legislation as if no one will notice it has all become a lie??
If your oil company & rest of us don’t start voting these political supporters out of office, start showing up at Environmental hearings to demand reality be put back into the process, demand EPA become part of solution instead part of problem and vehicle for Environmentalist to kill industry ….. then everyone in field needs to get new resume for skills applied to new field because this one is going to be DOA.
If you think this Environmental & Liberal War hasn’t moved into high gear – here is another example of what we just discussed going down this month!
Carbon, energy bills move ahead in Senate (http://www.delawareonline.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080605/NEWS08/806050389 )
The News Journal – Jun 05 4:05 AM Jeff Montgomery at email@example.com.
Two of the Minner administration’s flagship environmental bills cleared a Senate panel Wednesday and moved toward a floor vote, despite objections from leading citizen groups. One of the bills, S.B. 263, would oblige the state’s largest utilities to buy credits for releasing carbon dioxide from their smokestacks as early as next year. The other, S.B. 276, would overhaul management of the new Sustainable Energy Utility, an energy conservation agency that could receive millions for its programs under terms of the carbon credit bill. Both bills have become tangled in a separate debate over Bluewater Wind LLC’s proposed offshore wind farm. Supporters of the wind plan have argued that some carbon tax proceeds should help subsidize wind industry initiatives instead, instead of the SEU. Backers feel that they must get these bills passed through Senate & House in June, on the books or be in embarrasing situation.
<Lets all pray for an embarassing situation so the same fraud pulled in Europe isn’t put into play in the USA>
July 10, 2008 at 12:36 pm #6728
Lot of items listed mentioned are starting to be listed at several websites/articles like the one below with lot links to reference sources :
Global Warming Is Officially Over, Suck It Up Greenies
The satellite data is nothing new at all, but the greenies ignored it …. and politicians that promoted global warming are going to take a major hit when …
See full article at website: http://hubpages.com/hub/Global-Warming-Is-Officially-Over – 27
But sitll are not reported mainstream media or acknowledged by either Environmentalist or politicians/Congress yet – they are full steam ahead as though nothing has changed.
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