Oilsands poll shows Saskatchewan’s social divisions - Macleans.ca

Oilsands poll shows Saskatchewan’s social divisions

Region, race, and education play into provincial perceptions of oilsands development


A recent poll by Sigma Analytics shows Saskatchewanians are sharply divided on the question of oilsands development. In the survey conducted for the Saskatoon StarPhoenix and the Regina Leader-Post, 24.9 per cent of respondents said they “strongly support” oilsands development in the province, while 23 per cent are opposed. What the poll also, and most interestingly, reveals are stark social divisions on the issue, which are drawn along educational, age, ethnicity and regional lines.  Saskatchewan residents with a Grade 12 education or less or who are aged between 30-60 are more likely to support development than university graduates or those aged 18-29. Aboriginal people and those living in the northern, more rural regions were more likely to rate the province’s environment as “very poor,” as opposed to non-aboriginals or those living in urban centres who feel it is “very good”. The Sigma Analytics survey follows an announcement from Oilsands Quest Inc. that it is exploring and developing land holdings in the province.

Montreal Gazette

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Oilsands poll shows Saskatchewan’s social divisions

  1. I can understand the unemployable university flakes being opposed to the oilsands – why would an interior design or 'women's studies' grad know about oil or the petro-economy?

    But the natives? Where do those free loaders think their funding comes from?

    I suppose we know where all the stupid people stand on the issue now, though. Sadly, this is what passes for journalism.

    • "I suppose we know where all the stupid people stand on the issue now"

      I certainly know where you stand…

    • " unemployable university flakes"

      All those useless geologists, chemical and mechanical engineers? Way to immediately invalidate your argument, buddy.

    • Their so called free loading funding comes from their natural resources that were stolen.

  2. It's really too bad that there can't be more weight added to the opinion of those who have an education and those who actually live in the region that would be most affected.

    • You seem to be very poorly educated, you have the wrong opinion. Don't post anymore since it is likely there are people with more education than you on the internet.

    • You do know those "university flakes" include the engineers, scientists and managers who make producing the oil sands possible?

      As great the benefits of the oil sands are to the people of the area when they are producing, the revenue is fleeting and depends on the price and supply of oil. Once the oil sands are mined, the land is pretty much unusable for anything else. The aboriginals who "live there" know this, and that is why they don't hold a favourable view of the development.

      I assume that you will brush this off, because logic and reason require someone to be "educated", and I know you hate that.

  3. Oilsands Quest has been actively exploring and testing sites in Sask for most of the last decade. The northern exploration had in-situ recovery in mind. The southern was oil shale deposits.
    The oil isn't a question but infrastructure and methods are very much going to play on the minds of people holding the middle ground.

  4. First, bomb the universities…

    • "For just pennies a day, you can help people like this commenter learn social skills, buy pants and overcome ttheir fear of people. But this takes funding. They need your help, because there's still no cure for stupid". f

  5. I think I missed the exact moment when being educated became a negative thing in Canada. The new mayor of Toronto ran on a platform largely aimed at sticking it to the "elites" (ie. anyone with more than a grade 12 education) and won. Where do you think all of the geologists, chemists, engineers and senior manager responsible for oilsands development studied? I can only hope that "Jim" is a simple internet troll looking for a reaction, but too much of what I've seen and heard recently would suggest that they're not. Anti-intellectualism has long been a factor in American society and politics, and it's sad to see Canada going down the same route.

    • The 'intellectuals' who strain to tell us how 'educated' they are – are usually not the geology, chemical and engineering grads, nor do they attend the student protests – they're too busy studying.

      Being educated is not a negative thing, taking some kind of social studies program and declaring yourself an 'intellectual' – that's the kind of arrogance that gets a reaction from people.

      • There are so many generalizations in your post, that I don't even know where to begin. As an undergrad, I did a double major which straddled both the "hard" and social sciences. And I can tell you from direct experience that there are a lot of brilliant anthropologists, political scientists and psychologists, as well as a lot of very dense engineers, chemists and biologists. At the end of the day, they're just people, and the standard distribution of intelligence continues to exist in all groups. Your anti-social science bias fails to take into account the fact that some kids just aren't interested in math and science, just like some aren't interested in sociology or english. I ended up studying in two faculties because that's what I was interested in. I now work in a technical field, and I can't begin to tell you about the number of people I encounter every day who can do amazing things with computer code, but can't hold a decent conversation on current events, or even cook for themselves.

        I agree that anyone who declares themselves an "intellectual" is an ass and deserves whatever scorn is heaped upon them, but that's not what we're seeing in the US, and increasingly here in Canada. Merely being educated, or living in a particular part of given city, or one's chosen leisure activities – even your preferred method of transportation as we've seen recently – is grounds to be pigenholed and ridiculed.

        Nowhere in the article does it mention what the graduates who opposed oilsands development studied. "Jim's" reaction was simply a knee-jerk response to the word "university".

      • Those folk who tend to be "intellectuals" never refer to themselves as such. Just as real experts never refer to themselves as such. If you did then it is apparent that neither term applies to you. Both terms are words properly used by others. Education is related to intellect, but one does not necessarily indicate the other.
        As you learn more and more about a subject one thing you become aware of quite quickly is how little you actually know. It's this recognition that creates the humility you see in real experts/intellectuals. The truly ignorant are always certain about that of which they speak, the knowledgeable always tinge opinion with uncertainty because they know how much they really know.

  6. It is nor anti-intellectualism it is anti-elitism that has developed. And really it's the so-called elites that have created the problem by trying to force others to live by their values and rules and projecting a rather repugnant paternalism. The great unwashed are merely returning the favour.

    • Really
      So the church going masses always use carefully collected data to back up their certainty over their views on issues. These folk would never dream of acting paternalistically towards fellow citizens on the basis of needle exchanges, same sex marriage, equality of pay in the workplace, sex education etc. They would always back up their points of view with well founded data and argue from a position of knowledge. they wouldn't dream of forcing others to live a certain way because it says so in a book written two millenia ago and it doesn't matter what has occurred in the interim.
      Yeah, I reckon you might have reversed those positions a tad there mojo.
      Using evidence to overcome superstition or lazy thinking is not paternalistic, but ignoring evidence to support the latter is paternalism at its most repugnant.

  7. Still no real debate on Saskatchewan becoming a major oil sands/shale extractor.
    Mining, money, pollution, jobs…. debate here?
    Another comment board succumbed to off topic and uninteresting mud flinging.

  8. There's a lot of university trash out there.

  9. And look ant the fine mess all the highly educated grads got the world into

  10. how long has nexen been active in the north? i’ve been doing some research on the subject with regards to water sources/sask…if you look at a map all our water in the north is interconnected, when you start reaching the southern/farm land we have to start registering the water table and aqua-firs this so called “mining” is contaminating our water supplies. a large portion of sask live rural…people have “boil” water issues. but once you start looking into the health aspect and the growing cancer rate/steadily increasing (can’t remember specific date) and the cause of death for elderly, which is heart attack…you can’t actually get what they were admitted for…i am finding it difficult to find information on cenovus but they are active around weyburn farmland there is apparently ruined but i still have to confirm that. really don’t know what to “actually” do with the data but spread the word edit and add to it. i’m on facebook…

  11. i am just starting to look into the cause of cancers and where but the way the water travels, it spreading…but the research that is done is just for 2 specific areas around the oil sands…not the major city that people are migrating to Prince Albert. so i am having to cross reference following money trails. it’s a lot of work and i’m a student…not that much time.