European Union very negative toward Canadian tar sand development

European Commission’s plans to class fuel tar sand fuels as “highly polluting”

Canada isn’t happy at all about the EU’s plan to classify all tar sand development as “highly polluting.” Such a classification does have teeth. It is more than an insult.

Environmental groups are happy because this development in Canada is in fact extremely hard on the environment from mining it, extracting the crude “oil,” refining it, and transporting it (e.g. the Keystone XL and various other pipelines).  Finally the amount of new carbon dioxide added to the atmosphere is very high and these projects also leak the even more potent natural gas into the air.

Most climate and biological scientists see it as a disaster in every way, and the issue is beginning to show up in some of the protests  sweeping the globe about the uncaring corporations.

There is a story from Reuters on the EU’s action. EU Climate Chief: Science Shows Canada Oil Sand Risk. Reuters in Scientific American blog.



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  1. Daniel Berg Avatar
    Daniel Berg

    I was up in Ottawa for about a week very recently.

    There were pro-oil commercials running constantly. The oil companies were trying to get the message out that they care about the environment, are testing the areas around the tar sands constantly for any problems, and are dilligently working on more environmentally friendly ways to extract oil from the tar sands.

    They are literally spending tens of millions if not hundreds of millions of dollars up there right now to dupe the Canadian public.

  2. CodyCoyote Avatar

    Interesting. Outside of the Canadian operation , some of the largest tar sands operations producing today are found in Estonia , first developed during World War 1.

    Some of the largest undeveloped oil shale reserves are found in a bad place : Venezuela.

    1. Daniel Berg Avatar
      Daniel Berg

      Just waiting for the technology:

      “The Volga-Ural Basin also features the Melekess tar sands. Located in the massive Romashkino Field, the vast heavy oil accumulations are located in relatively shallow Permian strata – so shallow, in fact, that the low temperatures of the rocks in the formation contribute to the oil’s viscosity. Presently uneconomic, the Melekess oil sands may nevertheless become part of Russia’s proved reserves base given the right technological advances.

      Russia has an estimated 246.1 billion barrels of natural bitumen in place. Less than 14 percent – 33.7 billion barrels – is considered technically recoverable, though. The remaining 212.4 billion barrels of bitumen cannot be realistically extracted because they exist either in numerous small deposits or in remote areas. Much of this bitumen occurs in the Olenik Highland, which is located in the Lena-Anabar Basin in remote Eastern Siberia.”

    2. Larry Thorngren Avatar

      You have been listening too much to the Corporate owned media. Venezuela is just another country trying to control their own resources. Big oil would like us to invade them just as they did Libya.

  3. Wolfy Avatar

    Are you saying that Big Oil wants us to invade Canada? Canadian Bacon, any one?


Dr. Ralph Maughan is professor emeritus of political science at Idaho State University. He was a Western Watersheds Project Board Member off and on for many years, and was also its President for several years. For a long time he produced Ralph Maughan’s Wolf Report. He was a founder of the Greater Yellowstone Coalition. He and Jackie Johnson Maughan wrote three editions of “Hiking Idaho.” He also wrote “Beyond the Tetons” and “Backpacking Wyoming’s Teton and Washakie Wilderness.” He created and is the administrator of The Wildlife News.

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