Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Canada: America's New Gas Jockey!

The US of A cannot rely like it once did on Saudi, Venezuelan nor indeed its own oil. Its appetite remains voracious. Canada has the largest remaining accesible oil reserves left on the planet, after Saudi Arabia, in the form of the Alberta Tarsands. Are we now selling out? Development of the Tarsands goes ahead full steam at one million barrels a day, moving to six. Forgive the pun, for the method of extraction is to use natural gas to produce steam that makes the oily compound viscous and allows for extraction. Hey, isn't natural gas another finite fossil fuel? And how about the huge volume of permanently polluted groundwater which is now part of Alberta's heritage (fund, for those Canadians who see the inside joke). Apparently more energy is used in the extraction than is garnered in the final product. Go figure. So now we need the often nixed Mackenzie Valley Pipeline to bring down the gas from the Arctic. Justice Berger must be wincing to hear that one. Meanwhile Alberta's czar Murray Smith is going all out to promote as much development as possible, get this, before a scourge (my term I do admit) such as cold fusion (his example) comes along and spoils it for Alberta. But just might save the planet.
Sources: National Post, March 8th, 2006 and The National, CBC TV, March 21st, 2006.