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Oil & Gas News 

 

 

 

 

Oil & Gas Overview - Canada

 

According to Wikipedia (21-Feb-2013), oil reserves in Canada were estimated at 179 billion barrels in 2007. This figure includes the oil sands reserves that are estimated by government regulators to be economically producible at current prices using current technology.  According to this figure, Canada's reserves are third only to Venezuela and Saudi Arabia.  Over 95% of these reserves are in the oil sands deposits in the province of Alberta.  Alberta contains nearly all of Canada's oil sands and much of its conventional oil reserves.  The balance is concentrated in several other provinces and territories.  Saskatchewan and offshore areas of Newfoundland in particular have substantial oil production and reserves.  Alberta has 39% of Canada's remaining conventional oil reserves, offshore Newfoundland 28% and Saskatchewan 27%, but if oil sands are included, Alberta's share is over 98%.  (Consumption)

 

In other words, you can’t talk about oil in Ontario without talking about Alberta, which means taking hydraulic fracturing (aka “fracking”) and oil sands into account.

 

 

 

Mineral Rights

 

In Canada, mining/mineral rights are separate from surface rights and, for the most part, belong to the province (which means that they could be available for sale).  Read:  Wikipedia - Land ownership in Canada

 

Ownership of subsurface rights has fossil fuel, aggregate, mining, and water ownership implications.

 

Read “A Guide For Private Landowners Working With Ontario’s Mineral Exploration Community” (.pdf) and Surface and Mining Rights in Ontario (.pdf)

 

Learning from the USA (article)

 

 

Fracking

 

“Fracking” is a slang term for hydraulic fracturing.  Fracking refers to the procedure of creating fractures in rocks and rock formations by injecting steam or fluid and sand into cracks to force the rocks open, and to allow the oil and gas to flow out.  Vertical fracked wells have been drilled for decades but fracking was transformed when it was combined with new technologies such as 3D seismic imaging and horizontal high-volume (aka “slick-water”) fracking, which became commercially successful around 2003.

 

Historically the oil from the shale formations was too expensive to extract until technology was developed to drill horizontally.  Now fracking can occur kilometres below the surface, for kilometres away from the vertical well shaft.  A 6-acre drilling pad can extract gas from beneath 1,000 acres of land (article .pdf).

 

The fracking process is very controversial.  Opponents cite water pollution, earthquakes and a slew of other problems.  For more information re: fracking, click here.

 

 

Oil Sands/Tar Sands (Alberta)

 

 

The terms “oil sands” and “tar sands” are used interchangeably with a more negative connotation on the latter simply for the imagery it conveys. 

 

Oil sand is a mixture of bitumen (a thick tar-like substance), sand, clay, silt and water.  Bitumen is extracted using traditional mining techniques if the source is close to surface (20% of extraction), or through in-situ extraction (fracking with steam) for sources deeper than 200 feet (80% of extraction).

 

Upgrading converts thick bitumen to synthetic crude oil and diesel fuel.  Byproducts are petroleum coke, sulphur and tailings. 

 

Major problems resulting from oil sand production are quantity of fresh water use, fresh water loss, fresh water toxicity, watershed risk, impacts from toxic tailings ponds, greenhouse gas emissions, flaring of “unwanted” gas, and the controversial fracking methodology.

 

For more information, see Oil & Gas - Alberta

 

 

Shipping Oil & Gas Products

 

Fossil fuels can be shipped by truck, rail, pipeline or ship. 

 

Date

yyyy-mm-dd

Posted By

Article Link

Comment

2018-04-23

Reuters.com

Facing shipping constraints, Canada moving oil one truckload at a time

Rod Nickel, Julie Gordon

 

Pipelines

 

Link to general pipeline news

 

Link to Canadian Energy Pipeline Association

 

Link to America’s Dangerous Pipelines video (2mins)

 

Pipelines and water – Straits of Mackinac

 

In the USA local communities/residences are given a classification based on their distance from the centre of the pipeline. “Class 1” refers to low population areas with houses outside a 200’ distance from the pipeline.  This allows the oil company to use lower quality materials, higher pressures and less monitoring/regulation due to less damage potential.  Cities are classes 3-5.  (video 26mins)

 

 

 

Refineries in Canada

 

Refinery

Capacity

North Atlantic Refinery, Come by Chance, Nfld.

115,000 bbl/d

Imperial Oil Refinery – Dartmouth, NS

89,000 bbl/d

Irving Oil Refinery, Saint John, NB

300,000 bbl/d

Suncor Energy Inc., Refinery, Montreal, QC (article)

160,000 bbl/d

Levis, (Ultramar/Valero Energy Corp.), Levis, QC

215,000 bbl/d

Nanticoke Refinery (Imperial Oil Ltd.), Nanticoke, ON

112,000 bbl/d

Sarnia Refinery, (Imperial Oil), Sarnia, ON

115,000 bbl/d

Sarnia Refinery, (Suncor Energy), Sarnia, ON

85,000 bbl/d

Corunna Refinery, (Shell Canada), St. Clair, ON

72,000 bbl/d

Total

1,263,000 bbl/d

Source:  AndrewLeach.ca

 

Enbridge’s website (www.enbridge.com) quotes an economic paper written by public policy analyst Jean-François Minardi and published by the Montreal Economic Institute in August 2013 that says Quebec’s two refineries represent 20 per cent of Canadian capacity, employing about 1,000 workers, while the petrochemical sector in Montreal’s east end employs approximately 3,600 workers. (source)

 

Refining diluted bitumen (aka “dilbit”) prior to transportation requires finding a customer for each specific product, be it gasoline, diesel, jet fuel or otherwise.

 

NEWS – Refineries

 

Date

yyyy-mm-dd

Posted By

Article Link

Comment

2017-10-06

BNN.ca

Video:  Rubin: Energy East Wasn’t Going To Solve The Low Energy Price Problem (9 mins)

Jeff Rubin

- cancelled Energy East project

2016-07-13

iPolitics

Opinion:  The case for refining bitumen in Canada

Robert Hage

2015-01-26

Financial Post

Pacific Future Energy Corp eyes ‘money left on the table’ for $11-billion refinery project in B.C.

Yadullah Hussain

2014-12-10

Times Colonist

David Black has Kitimat refinery plan drawn up

Andrew A. Duffy

2014-07-24

Pipeline News North

BC’s 3 oil refineries: which will go?

Elaine Anselmi

 

“But, let’s face it, the job of the president of a typical big oil company in Canada, because they are running a subsidiary of a multi-national corporation, is to get the oil out of the ground and out of Canada.” David Black (source)

 

 

Petroleum Coke

 

Considered a refinery by-product, petroleum coke aka “petcoke” looks and acts like coal, but when burned it has higher carbon emissions and is thus considered “dirtier” than coal.  Despite the fact that petcoke is being shipped to countries like India, China, Latin America and surprisingly, Canada (Nova Scotia), petcoke is starting to pile up.

 

News - Petroleum Coke

 

 Date

yyyy-mm-dd

Posted By

Article Link

Comment

2018-04-10

The Energy Mix

Exclusive: Outside the Bitumen Bubble

Paul McKay

- chemical composition

2017-12-01

CBC News

Alberta oilsands waste exported by American refineries to pollution-choked India

The Associated Press

2016-02-04

National Observer

Scientists trace cancer-linked pollutant to oil sands stockpiles

Mike De Souza

2014-05-14

EcoWatch / Midwest Energy News

Nurses Join the Fight Against Toxic Petcoke Piles in Chicago

Kari Lydersen

2014-03-25

EcoWatch / Politics

Petcoke bill doesn't appear to have the votes

Thomas Frisbie

2014-01-14

EcoWatch / Midwest Energy News

Chicago’s Proposed Petcoke Regulations Full of Loopholes

Kari Lydersen

2013-10-15

Think Progress / Climate Progress

After Sparking Outrage In Detroit, Koch Brothers’ Tar Sands Waste Now Piling Up In Chicago

Kiley Kroh

2013-08-01

Think Progress / Climate Progress

You Can Thank The Koch Brothers For The Big, Dirty Cloud Floating Over Detroit

Kiley Kroh

- video of dust

2013-07-08

EcoWatch / Oil Change International

Infographic:  Piling up Keystone XL’s Petcoke

David Turnbull

2013-06-07

Grist

Canadian Power plant is buying up Detroit’s pile of tar-sands waste, burning it

John Upton

2013-06-06

Chronicle Herald

Nova Scotia Power burning high-sulfur petcoke from Detroit

Ian Austen, NY Times

Petcoke

2013-05-20

EcoWatch

The Koch Brothers’ Toxic Mountain of Petroleum Coke

Bold Nebraska

Petcoke

2013-05-17

New York Times

A Black Mound of Canadian Oil Waste is Rising Over Detroit

Ian Austen

petcoke

2013-01-17

Oil Change International

Petroleum Coke:  The Coal Hiding in the Tar Sands

Petroleum coke aka petcoke

 

 

 

Carbon Capture and Storage

 

Carbon capture and storage (CCS) is the process of capturing waste carbon dioxide (CO2) from large point sources such as fossil fuel power plants, transporting it to a storage site, and depositing it where it will not enter the atmosphere, normally an underground geological formation. The aim is to prevent the release of large quantities of CO2 into the atmosphere.  (wikipedia)

 

NEWS - Carbon Capture and Storage

 

Date

yyyy-mm-dd

Posted By

Article Link

Comment

2018-06-07

CBC News BC

B.C. company says it is sucking carbon from air, making fuel

Bob Weber, The Canadian Press

2016-08-22

EcoWatch / Climate News Network

Can Carbon Dioxide Be Safely Stored Deep Underground for Tens of Thousands of Years?

Tim Radford

2014-08-29

Calgary Herald

Ewart: Shell nears oilsands carbon capture launch

Stephen Ewart

 

 

 

Frack Sand

 

Frack sand is crystalline silica and is perfect for hydraulic fracturing.  The sand is combined with steam or fluid and forced into the cracks created by fracturing the rocks/rock formations deep underground to force the rocks open, and to allow the oil and gas to flow out.  The requirement for frac sand has created an extractive industry unto itself.  The industry puts an added burden of increased road maintenance, impacts of rock blasting, dry wells, dust and noise pollution on the neighbouring communities and taxpayers.  Frac sand operations require up to 8 million litres (2 million US gallons) of water every day. (article)

 

Check this link for News About Sand

 

 

 

Accidents, Spills & Explosions

 

In May 2013, Global News published “Crude Awakening - Introduction: 37 years of oil spills in Alberta” which calculated that Alberta has had an average of two crude oil spills per day, every day for the past 37 years.  Also it’s not just oil that leaks – produced water and source water are detrimental to the watershed and natural environment as well.  There is also air pollution.

 

Kalamazoo spill whistleblower, John Bolenbaugh, points out that spills are lucrative for oil & gas companies.  Once a spill occurs, insurance covers the costs and cleanup companies (typically owned by the oil & gas companies) are hired.  Shutting down operations for proper maintenance costs money.  Spills generate revenue.

 

Journalist Andrew Nikiforuk writes “Why We Pretend to Clean Up Oil Spills” (July 12, 2016)

 

Check this link to see How Gas Wells Leak (20 mins)

 

For a partial list of accident, spill and explosion history, click here.

 

 

 

Abandoned/”Orphan”/Spent Wells

 

Date

yyyy-mm-dd

Posted By

Article Link

Comment

2018-05-23

AlbertaPolitics.ca

Guest Post: Canadians should be on red alert over Redwater Energy case

Regan Boychuk

AO Info: Alberta Oil & Gas

2018-06-14

HCN.org (USA)

Latest: Abandoned gas wells aren’t adequately managed

Jodi Peterson

2018-06-10

Saskatchewan Herald

$4 Bil Risk: Taxpayer to Clean Orphan SK Oil Wells: Auditor

- cleanup cost of inactive wells estimated at $4 billion in Saskatchewan

2018-04-26

Pembina Institute

Blog: A liability iceberg in Alberta exposed by the Redwater legal case

Jodi McNeill

- tens of thousands of inactive well sites

2018-04-04

Thechronicleherald.ca

Opinion: Public at risk for oil and gas industry’s clean-up costs

Mark Tipperman, lawyer

2018-03-08

Calgary Herald

Oil firm shutting down, walking away from thousands of untended Alberta wells

Dan Healing

- Sequoia Resources Corp.

AO Info: Alberta Oil & Gas

2017-09-28

C.D.Howe Institute

All’s Well that Ends Well: Addressing End-of-Life Liabilities for Oil and Gas Wells

Benjamin Dachis, Blake Shaffer and Vincent Thivierge

2017-09-08

National Observer

Bankruptcy for profit in Alberta's oilpatch

Regan Boychuk

2016-05-30

NPR.org

Danger Below? New Properties Hide Abandoned Oil And Gas Wells

Stephanie Joyce

2016-05-20

Financial Post

Alberta court rules insolvent oil company’s assets won’t be used to clean up idle wells

Geoffrey Morgan

2016-02-12

Calgary Herald

Landowners fight for enforcement of rules at inactive Alberta well sites

Colette Derworiz

2015-02-25

Wall Street Journal (subscription)

How ‘Orphan’ Wells Leave States Holding the Cleanup Bag

Dan Frosch, Russell Gold

2014-02-13

Ffwdweekly.com

Alberta oil companies have abandonment issues

Suzy Thompson

 

 

 

Health & Safety

 

Citizen complaints include skin rashes, open sores, nose bleeds, stomach cramps, loss of smell, swollen and itching eyes, despondency, depression.

 

Livestock too can be affected with neurological, reproductive and gastrointestinal disabilities.

 

Death may also be an outcome of exposure to oil and gas processing pollution.

 

Sarnia is the most toxic place to live in Canada.  Click here for more information about Ontario's "Chemical Valley".

 

For further information on Health & Safety regarding oil and gas development, click here.

 

 

 

Global Warming aka Climate Change

 

“Whenever you burn conventional fuel, you create carbon dioxide. [....] The carbon dioxide is invisible, it is transparent, you can’t smell it, it is not dangerous to health, so why should one worry about it?  Carbon dioxide has a strange property. It transmits visible light but it absorbs the infrared radiation which is emitted from the earth. Its presence in the atmosphere causes a greenhouse effect [....] It has been calculated that a temperature rise corresponding to a 10 per cent increase in carbon dioxide will be sufficient to melt the icecap and submerge New York. All the coastal cities would be covered, and since a considerable percentage of the human race lives in coastal regions, I think that this chemical contamination is more serious than most people tend to believe.”  Edward Teller, Physicist, 1959 (source)

 

See AWARE-Ontario Climate Change News

 

 

 

The Crash

 

Humankind has been using fossil fuels in significant quantities for just over one hundred years.  At first fossil fuels were easy to find and cheap to extract but that is not the case today.  Unconventional fuels (aka “fracking”) place environmental, social and economic costs and risks on human and wild life populations that may exceed the limits of the planet.  Yet we have grown reliant on fossil fuels, much more than you may think.  What happens if, when, we run out or can no longer afford the cost of extraction?

 

Link to There’s No Tomorrow (peak oil, energy, growth & the future) (35 mins)

 

Link to A Crude Awakening - The Oil Crash (1 ½ hours)

 

Link to Oil Apocalypse: Peak Oil – What if the Oil Runs Out? (45 mins)

 

 

 

Oil & Gas Industry - Canadian Provinces

 

Metro News Article:  Infographic:  Where is fracking happening in Canada?

 

Government of Canada – Natural Resources Canada: Geography of Shale and Tight Resources (2016-08-23)

 

Link to AWARE-Ontario News Oil & Gas Offshore

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Oil & Gas Industry in Other Locations

 

 

 

 

 

Oil & Gas Industry – General News Archive

 

For more information, click General Oil & Gas News (2018)

For more information, click General Oil & Gas News (2017)

For more information, click General Oil & Gas News (2016)

For more information, click General Oil & Gas News (2015)

For more information, click General Oil & Gas News (2014)

For more information, click General Oil & Gas News (2013)

For more information, click General Oil & Gas News (2012)

 

 

The Airline Industry

 

Word is that each commercial plane flight uses the same amount of fuel as one year of car driving for each and every plane passenger.   This needs confirmation.

 

 

The Shipping Industry

 

For decades, the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) has rebuffed calls to clean up ship pollution. As a result, while it has long since been illegal to belch black, sulphur-laden smoke from power-station chimneys or lorry exhausts, shipping has kept its licence to pollute.

 

For 31 years, the IMO has operated a policy agreed by the 169 governments that make up the organisation which allows most ships to burn bunker fuel.

 

Christian Eyde Moller, boss of the DK shipping company in Rotterdam, recently described this as ‘just waste oil, basically what is left over after all the cleaner fuels have been extracted from crude oil. It’s tar, the same as asphalt. It’s the cheapest and dirtiest fuel in the world’.

 

Bunker fuel is also thick with sulphur. IMO rules allow ships to burn fuel containing up to 4.5 per cent sulphur. That is 4,500 times more than is allowed in car fuel in the European Union. The sulphur comes out of ship funnels as tiny particles, and it is these that get deep into lungs.

 

Thanks to the IMO’s rules, the largest ships can each emit as much as 5,000 tons of sulphur in a year – the same as 50 million typical cars, each emitting an average of 100 grams of sulphur a year.

 

With an estimated 800million cars driving around the planet, that means 16 super-ships can emit as much sulphur as the world fleet of cars. (article)

 

 

I was a marine engineer in the late 70's early 80's.We always switched to diesel fuel 2hrs before our arrival at any port.The bunker fuel used at sea had to be heated and run through a high speed centrifical purifier before being burned in the engine.The purifier removed more sludge from the bunker but also generated sludge which would be stored in a sludge tank.The tank would be subsequently dumped at sea.Don't know if this practice is still used today.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-1229857/How-16-ships-create-pollution-cars-world.html#ixzz3WwNupYWj

 

 

Shipping News

 

Date

yyyy-mm-dd

Posted By

Article Link

Comment

2016-12-02

National Post

‘Magic pipe’ used to spew oily waste into water: Princess Cruises to pay record-breaking fine for pollution

Brady Dennis, The Washington Post

2015-04-10

CBC News

Vancouver oil spill: Cleanup moves to shoreline

- bunker fuel

2009-11-21

Daily Mail (UK)

How 16 ships create as much pollution as all the cars in the world

 

 

 

 

Oil & Gas Industry – Formations

 

For more information, click here

 

 

Oil & Gas Industry – Alternatives

 

“Costs accrue at every point of the fossil fuel supply chain. Extraction processes can generate air and water pollution, and harm local communities. Transporting fuels from the mine or well can cause air pollution and lead to serious accidents and spills. When the fuels are burned, they emit toxins and global warming emissions. Even the waste products are hazardous to public health and the environment.” (source)

 

Go to AWARE-Ontario Energy Alternatives

 

 

 

 

 

“The Council of Canadians opposes fracking because of its high water use, its high carbon emissions, its impacts on human health, the disruption it causes to wildlife, and the danger it poses to groundwater and local drinking water. We are calling for a country-wide stop to fracking operations.”

Brent Patterson, Council of Canadians (article)

 

 

 “We all need energy, we all use various forms of gas and energy that involve varying degrees of risk for us and our environment. Accurate information about the risks is necessary to determine the cost to our environment and people’s health. The thought of censoring objection, or burying questions and concerns with glossy marketing materials defies the principles of critical analysis. The price we may pay in the long run with damage to our environment from these chemicals may be too much, but those with money to make in the short term don't want to have a conversation with full disclosure about potential risks.

 

An uninformed democracy fails. When elected officials are beholden to lobbyists and financial interests above the health of the people, that is when people of all ages and backgrounds should be taking a stand and asking questions.”

Jacob Devaney, Huffington Post (article)

 

 

 

Economists and Very Serious People keep telling the movement that it can’t stop the tar sands entirely. The only sensible response is, “F*ck you. Watch me.””

David Roberts, Grist (article)

 

 

“If you're a landowner being courted for your mineral rights, you may hear a lot of things but miss hearing others.  You'll hear that fracking, with its noise, pounding, dust, lights, fumes, and trucks, lasts but a few short weeks.  Surely such distress could be tolerated for a few weeks.  What you don't hear is the words "per frack".  Since one site can contain twenty wells or more and each well can be fracked and fracked again, some landowners begin to feel that they may have been had.”

J. Dial, OpEdNews (article)

 

 

“There’s going to be consequences.  Consequences will mainly happen to our future generations but some of them are happening now.” 

Carter Camp, Ponca Activist, American Indian Movement Leader (video)

 

 

 

Other Information:

 

Other Uses of Petroleum

 

The Globe and Mail:  Opinion:  Who cleans up the mess when oil and mining companies go bankrupt? (Tim Gray)

 

 


Go to AWARE-Ontario Energy Alternatives

 

Return to AWARE-Ontario.ca Home Page

 

List of Ontario’s Issues

 

What Can I Do?

 

 

 

 

 

 

Disclaimer: This information has been compiled through private amateur research for the purpose of allowing the reader to make an informed and educated decision.  However, while the information is believed to be reliable, accuracy cannot be guaranteed.

 

 


APPENDICES

 

APPENDIX A

 

 

Link:   https://awareontario.nfshost.com/AWARE-Ontario/News%20Oil_Gas.htm

 

 

 

APPENDIX B

 

 

Link to photos of oil sands:  http://www.businessinsider.com/photos-destructive-canada-oil-sands-2012-10#to-get-a-look-at-the-oil-sand-mines-we-rented-this-cessna-172-which-the-pilot-was-allowed-to-bring-down-to-1000-feet--from-there-through-the-open-window-and-with-a-long-lens-we-were-able-to-see-what-really-goes-on-in-one-of-the-most-controversial-places-on-the-planet-1

 

Link to photos of frack site:  http://www.businessinsider.com/a-tour-of-cenovus-energys-in-situ-christina-lake-facility-2012-5#cenovus-picked-us-up-in-this-king-air-350-in-edmonton-at-7-amto-take-us-to-their-state-of-the-art-oil-sands-drilling-site--the-technology-that-is-changing-the-face-of-the-canadian-economy-1

 

 

 

 

Extracted from comments by Marc W. McCord on article:

 

“First, there are TWO forms of water that come back out of a well bore – flowback and produced water. Flowback water returns to the surface during the hydraulic fracturing process, and the amount that returns is typically between 10 and 60% depending upon the formation and downhole pressure. Flowback water contains frac fluids and sand (as a proppant), as well as naturally occurring minerals, heavy metals, salts and radioactive materials that were buried until the well bore was drilled and fractured.

 

Produced water returns to the surface during production operations when oil or gas are being sent to the wellhead. Produced water contains some of what was originally the water used to frac the well combined with the deep earth elements that were released during the fracturing process and any groundwater that is found within the gas- or oil-bearing strata.

 

Both flowback and produced water are hazardous, flammable and explosive. Both are harmful if breathed, consumed or absorbed by the human body. Both can kill, main or sicken a human, animal or plant. Both cause pollution of water, air and soil.

 

Second, wastewater is NOT recycleable because of the financial and technical costs associated with doing it. Devon Energy estimated that using recycled water would raise production costs by 70% – natural gas currently sells for about one third its production cost, and then there are the added costs for taxes, royalties and transportation (pipelines, trucks, rail and ships, if sending LNG transcontinental.)

 

Third, as to be removed from the hydrologic cycle, that is a yes and no proposition. technically, it is forever removed from our hydrologic cycle when it is destroyed and then deep injected into the Ellenberger formation 15-18,000 feet beneath the surface to dispose of it because treatment and re-use is not financially feasible. But, on the practical side the earth is full of natural and man-made fissures and cracks that provide a migration pathway into groundwater, surface water, air and soil, so unfortunately it is NOT truly removed from our hydrologic cycle in practical terms. It is merely removed from the supply of available freshwater that we can drink.”

 

 

 

APPENDIX C

 

Arithmetic, Population and Energy

 

Dr. Albert A. Bartlett

Professor Emeritus

Department of Physics

University of Colorado at Boulder

 

Full video (1 hr:14 mins)

 

Part 1 (roughly 10 mins per part)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F-QA2rkpBSY

Part 2

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pb3JI8F9LQQ

Part 3

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CFyOw9IgtjY

Part 4

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yQd-VGYX3-E

Part 5

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qHuwgxrTKPo

Part 6

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-3y7UlHdhAU

Part 7

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RyseLQVpJEI

Part 8

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VoiiVnQadwE

 

 

APPENDIX D

 

Opposition Letter – Energy East Pipeline

 

Stop the Energy East Pipeline

 

I am opposed to the Energy East pipeline and urge the Quebec provincial government to take all measures necessary to ensure it is never built. The project jeopardizes water, land, and ocean ecosystems by the use of fifty year old natural gas pipelines that were never designed to transport bitumen.

 

Bitumen is thick and viscous, and must be diluted with toxics and pumped under great pressure to flow in pipelines. Doing so puts Canadians and ecosystems at risk of further disasters from oil sand leaks and explosions. Your great province’s own tragedy in Lac-Mégantic – and the disastrous pipeline spills in Kalamazoo, Michigan, and Mayflower, Arkansas – highlight the dangers of transporting oil sands crude.

 

I am writing to demand that the Government of Quebec protect the health and safety of Canadians by denying approval for the Energy East pipeline.

 

* * *

Opposition Letter – Energy East Pipeline (from Climate Ark/Ecological Internet)

 

Honourable Pauline Marois, Première ministre du Québec

 

Dear Honourable Pauline Marois,

 

I am writing to strongly oppose the Energy East pipeline, and to urge the Quebec provincial government to take all measures necessary to ensure it is never built. The project will industrially develop and destroy water, land, and ocean ecosystems across a vast swath of Eastern Canada’s intact ecosystems. The world demands that the pipeline not be built and that tar sands be left in the ground under intact old-growth boreal forests where they belong.

 

Shockingly, the TransCanada Corp. plans to convert and extend a fifty year old natural gas pipeline to transport tar sands crude through Quebec. Tar sands is thick and viscous, and must be diluted with toxics and pumped under great pressure to flow in pipelines. Doing so puts Quebec's peoples and ecosystems at risk of further disasters from tar sand leaks and explosions. Your great province’s own tragedy in Lac-Mégantic – and the disastrous pipeline spills in Kalamazoo, Michigan, and Mayflower, Arkansas – highlight the dangers of transporting tar sands crude.

 

The project’s ecological unsustainability is made worse by the fact it would be carrying filthy tar sands synthetic oil – derived from the clearcut mining of old-growth boreal forests. The extraction and refining of tar sands oil requires massive deforestation, consumes tremendous amounts of fresh water, and leaves behind toxic and cancer-causing chemicals. Its transport threatens half a continent’s wetland ecosystems, waterways, and aquifers – and will release tar sands’ and boreal forests’ huge carbon stores.

 

The simple fact is this: more pipelines equal more tar sands mining – and that means more greenhouse gas emissions. The CO2 embedded in the tar sands, all by itself, means “game over” for the world’s stable climate system. Together, we need to invest in clean energy, not tar sands expansion, which signals continued fossil fuel addiction. The world has better energy choices than dirty tar sands oil – including efficiency and conservation and the development of critical renewable and energy-saving technologies and policies.

 

I am writing to demand that the Government of Quebec protect the health and safety of your citizens and the world by denying approval for the Energy East pipeline. Please either immediately make clear that Quebec will never allow such a pipeline or else face escalating protest. The world is watching and expecting you to lead.

 

With grave concern,

 

APPENDIX E

 

 

“Fracking” is a slang term for hydraulic fracturing.  Fracking refers to the procedure of creating fractures in rocks and rock formations by injecting steam or fluid and sand into cracks to force the rocks open, and to allow the oil and gas to flow out.  Fracking well operations cause air quality problems, water pollution problems, water supply problems, explosions, spills, health problems, social problems, real estate and financial problems.  This exploitative extractive industry tends to take the oil and gas, and all of the money, leaving local governments and people to deal with the repercussions.

 

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 Gas drillers pledge their leases at banks to borrow the money to drill wells and pay contractors.  When they can’t pay, the bank forecloses on the loan and the contractor’s file mechanics liens against the encumbered asset. “The encumbered asset” is legal talk for “your farm,” as many hapless folks are finding out.
A mechanics liens from a contractor would certainly go against the leased mineral rights, and if the lease contained surface access (which it would have to) then, conceivably they could get a judgment against the land owner. Regardless, if the lien is legitimate it will cloud the title – so if the landowner goes to sell or refinance, they may have to pay off the contractor just to get rid of the mechanic’s lien. Anyone that is Compulsively Integrated into a well could face such an encumbrance. Plus the encumbrance of the banks that these leases have been pledged to en masse to drill the wells. Those can find their way back to the individual leases, since that was the collateral in the driller’s loan: Somebody’s farm. A lot of farms.

 

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