Blog Post: The Edmonton Journal editorial board has just published an editorial that must read like anethema to tar sands supporters. Entitled "The risks of rushing the oilsands," this opinion piece asks Albertans to think about the intractable environmental problems that tar sands development has not been able to solve, particularly greenhouse gas emissions and toxic tailings lakes. It acknowledges that the promise of technology as a panacea has not played out and that it's risky to allow development to continue without it, and then suggests that it's time to slow things down until we have the solutions in hand. This may sound like common sense, but it is a position that has been missing from the debate about the future of Alberta's bitumen reserves, so bravo for the Edmonton Journal to put it one the editorial page for all Canadians to read.
Blog Post: For years the Canadian government has been lobbying governments across Europe not to “discriminate against the tar sands” as the EU implements its ground-breaking climate legislation called the Fuel Quality Directive. The Canadians have argued that the carbon intensity of tar sands production is similar to other crudes and therefore should not be “discriminated against”. Canadians have also been lobbying the Obama administration to approve the highly controversial Keystone XL pipeline. But the tar sands industry has a dirty little secret that has overwhelming political and economic consequences for the development of the tar sands: According to a new scientific analysis, many tar sands wells are actually using more energy than they produce.
Blog Post: As the world awaits State Department’s Final Environmental Impact Statement and President Obama’s decision on the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline, a series of articles reminded us that Canada lacks a serious climate policy—and cannot even finalize simple oil and gas industry regulations. Canada’s failure to implement any meaningful climate policies demonstrates that the Harper government is not aligned with the Obama administration’s climate goals. The articles refer to President Obama’s comments that Canada could "potentially be doing more" to curb carbon emissions from oil-sands development—though experts have noted that there are significant policy and political barriers to actually mitigating those emissions.
Blog Post: Today marks the 3rd Anniversary of the Save the Fraser Declaration, a declaration signed by more than 130 First Nations, which states: We will not allow the proposed Enbridge Northern Gateway Pipelines, or similar Tar Sands projects, to cross our lands, territories and watersheds, or the ocean migration routes of Fraser River salmon.
Blog Post: Today, on the 3rd Anniversary of the Save the Fraser Declaration, the Yinka Dene Alliance, a group of 6 First Nations strongly committed to stopping the Enbridge Northern Gateway tar sands pipeline, hosted a Save the Fraser Declaration press conference in Vancouver, BC which recommitted the existing 130 signatories and where the Stellat’en First Nation added its voice.
Blog Post: By now you’ve likely heard all about how the RCMP and CSIS have been gathering information on environmental groups opposed to oilsands developments and projects like Enbridge’s proposed Northern Gateway pipeline. It’s enough to send a shiver down your spine. But hey, coming from a government that once branded environmentalists as “radicals,” we can’t say it’s a huge surprise. The real kicker is that the fair and open environmental review process Ecojustice and our clients have placed our faith in may have been a pipe dream all along. Records obtained by a journalist under the Access to Information Act, as reported in the Vancouver Observer, suggest that the RCMP and CSIS gathered intelligence on groups opposed to oil and gas development — groups like our client ForestEthics Advocacy — and characterized them as a potential security risk in emails to members of the National Energy Board (NEB).
Blog Post: 350.org co-founder Bill McKibben will soon publish an article in Rolling Stone about President Obama and Keystone XL that I hope you will take some time to read. It’s an important reflection on President Obama’s climate legacy thus far, and essential reading as we all prepare for the home stretch of the fight against Keystone XL. You can read it on the Rolling Stone website when it comes out, and when you do please give your feedback on what our next steps to stop the pipeline should be. It comes down to this: The President’s actions speak louder than his words. And it’s time for our actions to speak louder too. In this article, Bill starts a conversation that needs your input.
Blog Post: A coalition of organizations and grassroots groups have raised over $30,000 in 20 days to help fund the Tar Sands Trial (thetarsandstrial.ca). The lawsuit, which currently alleges over 17,000 treaty violations against the terms of Treaty 6, was initiated by the community of the Beaver Lake Cree in 2008.