Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Here’s something to remember when you fill your tank today.

Syncrude, the conglomerate of oil companies participating in the Tar Sands, will produce over 100 million barrels of oil this year, which they are expected to sell for over $120 a barrel or a modestly projected annual income of $12 billion dollars.

At an average production cost of $40 per barrel of oil, the gross profit for the operations before the two provinces and the Feds get their cut will be over $8 billion dollars.

Despite the fact that the tar sands will produce over 40 million tonnes of greenhouse gases this year, our Federal Government and the producing provinces want to continue expanding the Tar sands development.
There are over 3200 tar sands lease agreements in place right now, covering an area larger than Vancouver Island, and governments and the oil industry are constantly working to increase this number.

It is estimated that by 2011, annual greenhouse gas emissions from the tar sands plants alone will be over 80 million tones of CO2 equivalent - a greater quantity of emissions than that produced by all of Canada's passenger cars today.
In collaboration with the producing provinces and the oil industry, the Tories are claiming that the CCS (Carbon Capture and Storage) technologies is the only answer to reduce greenhouse gases produced by the Tar Sands.

They claim that CCS will start to reduce the greenhouse gases, starting in 2015 regardless of the fact that the technology has never been applied on such a large scale and there are no major companies with CCS expertise, currently working on it.

In other words let’s stall and delay and make hay while the sun shines.

Besides the obvious fact that the country needs a Federal Government that is actually concerned about the environment and the reduction of greenhouse gases, the oil industry needs an incentive to participate and at this scale of pollution the Carbon Trading Plan will not work.

The purpose of the carbon tax is to provide that incentive.
I lived in Edmonton when the oil rigs moved out in 78, The city became the crime capital of Canada that year with people robbing seven elevens at night for food. It was tough times. Alberta is a beautiful province and I am glad to they are prospering.
But there is price to pay for that prosperity.

References the Globe here and Greenpeace here.

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