Alberta Tar Sands and Mackenzie River Delta
Having grown tired of decades of government promises to consult with native leaders, two northern Alberta bands have launched lawsuits over oil and gas activity on traditional native land. More lawsuits are looming.
"A vacuum has occurred between First Nations groups and the government," said Chief Jim Boucher of the Fort
Just weeks after a federal court demanded more information on the significance of the climate change effects of Imperial Oil’s $8-billion Kearl Tar Sands Mine, the Canadian government is demonstrating its hypocrisy on the climate change crisis by preparing to fast-track the company's federal approvals. In doing so, the feds are ignoring once again the dangerous health and environmental effects resulting from tar sands mines, including significant greenhouse gas emissions and the increased incidence of cancer in downstream indigenous communities.
There is a growing consensus that 450ppm CO2e is the "tipping point" for dangerous anthropogenic climate change. This means that any new project that would increase global concentrations of CO2e should by definition be seen as a project with a "significant" effect on Global Climate Change.
The Kearl mine will introduce significant amounts of Greenhouse Gas Pollution into the atmosphere - the equivalent of 800 000 new cars appearing on Canada's roads.
One thing seems clear - the Canadian Harper government is able to move something really fast through when it wants it. The problem is what Canadians really want is for him to move GHG reductions - not increases - through quickly. In March, Environment Minister John Baird stated that tar sands projects would be required by 2012 to incorporate carbon capture and storage technology to reduced their greenhouse gas emissions by 2018. The Kearl Project should be subject to these rules!
Federal fast-tracking of the authorization to destroy fish habitat by the Kearl Tar Sands means: ... Read more »
Edmonton - The report of the re-convened Joint Review Panel assessing Imperial Oil’s Kearl Oil Sands Project is evasive, convoluted and fails to answer the questions directed to it by the Federal Court of Canada says a coalition of environmental groups that initiated the court challenge.
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It has all changed - slowly, then suddenly.
Now, a bright spotlight is fixed on the oil sands. Tougher new laws and longer, more demanding regulatory processes are pushing companies to change how they approach environmental concerns.
And as companies adapt, costs for already-expensive oil sands projects will continue to rise.