Environment Canada report warns of oilsands concerns

‘Secret’ presentation calls contamination of Athabasca River ‘a high-profile concern’

An Environment Canada presentation prepared last spring warns of the potential cost of not addressing collateral damage from the oilsands industry in Alberta, according to Postmedia. The report was marked “secret” but obtained via access to information legislation. It notes: “Contamination of the Athabasca River is a high-profile concern,” and highlights “questions about possible effects on health of wildlife and downstream communities.” Using figures from the Canadian Energy Research Institute, the report also indicates that the oilsands sector generates 100,000 direct and indirect jobs in Canada, and is expected to contribute $1.7 trillion to the Canadian economy over 25 years.

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Environment Canada report warns of oilsands concerns

  1. You know we spell “Athabasca” with a “c” out here in Alberta, eh?
    Spell checker not working?

  2. Whats not working is the people in power realizing that we’re killing our planet so the rich can get richer. 

  3. Actually both of you are right in some way.
    Athabaska is the regional spelling of the Aboriginal lands and tribes in all our history books in Alberta.
    The Athabasca River is correctly spelled with a “C”
    This river is one of the longest in Canada but is very unique for any river. Why?
    Because it rises in trhe Columbia Glacier in the Rockies, flows East and then North. As it flows north it contacts oil rich sands and in the summer especially the bitumen from the river banks leaches off and plops into the river upstream and downstream of the plantsite in large patches confusing folks who havent time to study the region like eco-nuts who go on to blame the plantsites.
    This river eventually feeds over 230,000 people and has over 65 cabins on its shores.
    It eventually reaches the Arctic Ocean. It is around 1380 klicks long. Jackfish sdwim in the river but they develop callouses when they encounter the bitumen and dont make good eating unless you are starving like Alexander MacKenzie said in 1788.

    • The Atha b doesn’t go on to the Arctic Ocean although some of it ends up there; it ends as a river in lake Athabasca.
      As for the pollution inthe river, it’s true some it is naturally occurring, but David Shindler and a team form UA has shown that the oil sands do indeed pollute the river further.

  4. Nobody says – Is the Athabaska getting more polluted or not ?? It is always easy to critisize withouty providing facts to the people !!!! As far as I know the river is well protected by regulations. At least with CNQ it is and has been for over 8 years

  5. Studies have shown increasing concentrations of pollutants downstream of production plants.  It is happening……the question is how long before the damage is irreversible……nice legacy to leave our children! 

  6. Crude oil has been running into the MacKenzie River long before it was recorded. Clean sand should be better than tarsand. The volume of pollutants has to be minisule compared to the oil that is now recovered. Oil on the ground used to be a pollutant. Let’s clean it up. Make work, pay taxes, have schools and a medical system. Those eco – folks must be from the same school that choked the automobile engine in 1973 when we went from 20 to 10 miles per gallon with the family car. I would look very hard into exactly where the money for this eco friendly lobby comes from. You may be shocked.

  7. There is no way to contain the toxic waste (each 1 gal. of oil produces 5 gal. of waste).  There is no known method of containing the large quantities of known carcinogenic material.

    Source:  Tar Sands Invasion pdf.  While oil companies are obligated by law to reclaim their tar sands operations, the track record to date and the mas- sive extent of environmental degradation make success- ful restoration of the Boreal Forest nearly impossible. Less than one percent of the 200 square miles of land disturbed by tar sands mining operations thus far has been certified by the government as reclaimed.32 The oil industry has claimed that as much as 33 square miles have been reclaimed, but have not shown that this area has met any reclamation standards or guidelines.33 In addition, the toxic tailings ponds represent an im- mense long-term reclamation challenge for the industry, as no reclamation approach has been proven to successfully manage this toxic waste.

    Why is the media soft pedaling this extremely outrageous vile mistake?

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