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Climate Impacts, Creating a Low Carbon Future

Big Oil to Rachel Notley: Bring on a carbon tax

Feature

Paul Haavardsrud | CBC News - May 25th 2015

Press Clipping: Big Oil is urging Alberta's new government to toughen up the province's environmental policies. Suncor CEO Steve Williams told a downtown Calgary crowd that he supports a carbon tax, the latest sign of how much the political landscape has shifted in Alberta, as well as the global discussion about climate change. "We think climate change is happening," Williams, Suncor's chief executive, told reporters. "We think a broad-based carbon price is the right answer."

Spills and Leaks, Kinder Morgan

Just how risky is Kinder Morgan’s Trans Mountain Pipeline expansion?

Heather Libby | Desmog Canada - May 21st 2015

Press Clipping: With the May 27 deadline for evidence submission to the National Energy Board’s review of the Kinder Morgan pipeline expansion project fast approaching, the cities of Burnaby and Vancouver are stepping up. Last Wednesday, the City of Burnaby quietly released a report [PDF] outlining the risks and possible implications of a fire at the Burnaby tanker terminal. The results, to quote Mayor Derek Corrigan, are “comprehensive and jarring.” “It is remarkable that Kinder Morgan is even asking the citizens of Burnaby to assume such risks, but even moreso that the National Energy Board is willing to consider expanding this storage site in this location."

Kinder Morgan

Economist Robyn Allan publicly withdraws from “rigged” review of Kinder Morgan pipeline

Carol Linnitt | Desmog Canada - May 21st 2015

Press Clipping: Economist and former ICBC president Robyn Allan has withdrawn from the National Energy Board’s (NEB) review of the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain pipeline expansion project, saying she can no longer “endorse a process that is not working.” In a letter addressed to Sherri Young, secretary of the NEB, Allan said the “review is not conducted on a level playing field” and that because the panel is “not an impartial referee…the game is rigged.”

Economic Factors, Enbridge Northern Gateway, Energy East

In the oil sands, a painful shift to a new normal

Feature

Jeff Lewis | Globe and Mail - May 18th 2015

Press Clipping: For years, Alberta’s deposits of tarry bitumen attracted billions in investment from the world’s oil giants. Those days are gone. Today, the sector is reeling amid a price shock that has sapped billions from corporate budgets and forced a dramatic rethink about the companies’ role in global energy markets. By one estimate, as much as 1.2 million barrels per day of future production capacity has been put on hold, only a fraction of which will be resurrected. This slimmer production outlook will ease demand for multibillion-dollar pipelines, potentially delaying projects such as Northern Gateway and Energy East well into next decade.

Spills and Leaks, Kinder Morgan

Up to 90 per cent of Burrard Inlet oil spill would reach shoreline in hours

Feature

Tiffany Crawford and Kelly Sinoski | Vancouver Sun - May 18th 2015

Press Clipping: An independent oil spill trajectory model created for the cities of Vancouver and Burnaby, and the Tsleil-Waututh Nation, in response to Kinder Morgan's pipeline expansion plans, has found that up to 90 per cent of the oil from a major oil tanker spill in the Burrard Inlet would reach the shoreline within 48 hours. Vancouver mayor Gregor Robertson called the report "alarming," and said many residents believe the Kinder Morgan proposal poses "far too great a risk to our local economy and environment."

Climate Impacts, Creating a Low Carbon Future

A note for Rachel Notley: A carbon tax is not political suicide

Feature

Marc Jaccard | Globe and Mail - May 18th 2015

Press Clipping: Alberta premier-elect Rachel Notley must be facing a long queue of oil executives with policy advice. Before getting overwhelmed, she might consider this modest proposal that solves her budget, energy, climate and political challenges in one go: Sacrosanct as this may sound in Alberta, Ms. Notley should implement a carbon tax. It should start at $10 this year, reach $20 in 2016 and $30 in 2017. Political suicide? Hear me out.

Climate Impacts, Petrostate Politics

Canada reneges on emissions targets as tar sands production takes its toll

Suzanne Goldenberg | The Guardian - May 15th 2015

Press Clipping: Canada has retreated on past promises to fight climate change, setting out lower targets for cutting greenhouse gas emissions than any other industralised country so far ahead of a critical conference in Paris. Canada committed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 30% below 2005 levels by 2030. That is a far weaker target than the European Union or the US, and is less ambitious than the one Canada set in 2009 – and which it is unlikely to meet because of the vast expansion of Alberta tar sands production. “The Harper government has not only ignored its existing reduction target, but the pro-tar sands policies it has adopted are taking us in the opposite direction."