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Archive for July 17th, 2008

Another Spill at Suncor

Posted by mhudema on July 17, 2008

Suncor pipeline spill results in shutdown

By CAROL CHRISTIAN
Today staff
Thursday July 17, 2008

It’s estimated that up to 1,260 barrels of diesel fuel was spilled as a result of a leak from a Suncor Energy pipeline Tuesday morning about 40 kilometres north of Lac La Biche.
“It’s a very considerable size spill,” said Darin Barter, Alberta Energy Resources Conservation Board (ERCB) spokesman this morning. He added the pipeline was shutdown immediately after the leak was first noticed by staff at Suncor’s Pipeline Control Centre in Sherwood Park.
The pipeline, which remains out of operation, carries product from Fort McMurray to Edmonton. It is one of the company’s original pipelines, installed about 40 years ago.
“The positive thing that out of what is a bad situation is that it’s all on dry land,” he said. “There are no water bodies that have been affected, and there’s been no evacuations.
“The ability to clean in that area is very good.”
The ERCB is monitoring clean-up operations at the site of the leak. All other appropriate authorities and agencies have been notified.
As is normal practice, the ERCB, the oilsands primary regulator, will conduct an investigation into the incident.

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Initially, the clean-up involves the use of vacuum trucks, which were on site Wednesday. Barter acknowledged there is going to be some soil contamination in the top levels. He predicted that soil will likely have to be removed to a certain depth, and taken to a waste management facility for proper disposal.
Barter noted Suncor will not be able to resume operating the pipeline “until they can prove to us that it’s safe to operate.”
At this time, Suncor has said production from its oilsands facility is not affected.
The ERCB reported no injuries as a result of the leak, and there is no danger to the public from the release.
Suncor staff first noticed the leak at about 11:30 a.m. Tuesday.
The ERCB was subsequently notified at approximately 4 p.m. that day.
That notification delay will form part of the investigation.
“Notification to us is very important,” said Barter. “The ability for a company to identify, take immediate steps and notify the ERCB is very important to us. That gets action happening. We can contact other government agencies, emergency services if the company hasn’t already done so. So that notification to us is absolutely paramount.”
Shawn Davis, Suncor spokeswoman, noted the time delay was due to the fact Suncor staff had to travel to the leak area to confirm the spill.
According to the ERCB, the pipeline failure rate in Alberta was at a record low 2.1 failures per 1,000 km of pipeline in 2007, down more than 30 per cent from 2000 when there were 3.3 per 1,000 km.
There are 392,000 km of ERCB-regulated pipeline in Alberta.
In 2007, the ERCB conducted 1,647 pipeline inspections.

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Who Will Pay for BP Refinery

Posted by mhudema on July 17, 2008

Northwest Indiana Times
Who will pay for the BP expansion?
By Bessie Dent | Thursday, July 17, 2008
The BP Refinery in Whiting has the go-ahead to build a $3.8 billion “upgrade” to process tar sands from Alberta, Canada — a dirty, inefficient, and expensive process from beginning to end.
Producing one barrel of tar sands oil requires removing an average of four tons of earth, uses between two and 4.5 barrels of water, and consumes enough natural gas to heat a family home for two to four days. The resulting barrel of “oil” is actually a barrel of asphalt.

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A Generational Challenge to Repower America – Al Gore

Posted by mhudema on July 17, 2008

2008-07-17 A Generational Challenge to Repower America, Al Gore

A Generational Challenge to Repower America, Al Gore

D.A.R. Constitution Hall, Washington, D.C.

July 17, 2008

Ladies and gentlemen:

There are times in the history of our nation when our very way of life depends upon dispelling illusions and awakening to the challenge of a present danger. In such moments, we are called upon to move quickly and boldly to shake off complacency, throw aside old habits and rise, clear-eyed and alert, to the necessity of big changes. Those who, for whatever reason, refuse to do their part must either be persuaded to join the effort or asked to step aside. This is such a moment. The survival of the United States of America as we know it is at risk. And even more – if more should be required – the future of human civilization is at stake.

I don’t remember a time in our country when so many things seemed to be going so wrong simultaneously. Our economy is in terrible shape and getting worse, gasoline prices are increasing dramatically, and so are electricity rates. Jobs are being outsourced. Home mortgages are in trouble. Banks, automobile companies and other institutions we depend upon are under growing pressure. Distinguished senior business leaders are telling us that this is just the beginning unless we find the courage to make some major changes quickly.

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Carbon Capture Under Fire

Posted by mhudema on July 17, 2008

Carbon capture under fire

The Alberta government has allotted $2 billion to pursue carbon capture and storage (CCS) at a time when some environmentalists are questioning the worth of the process.
A relatively new technology, carbon storage is supposed to keep millions of tonnes of carbon dioxide gas from being released into the atmosphere by industries such as oilsands extraction or coal-fired power generation.

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Greenpeace Press Premiers to Sign Kyotoplus

Posted by mhudema on July 17, 2008

Greenpeace to press premiers to sign on to KYOTOplus

    QUEBEC CITY, July 16 /CNW Telbec/ - Greenpeace will press Canada's
premiers to sign on to the KYOTOplus targets for greenhouse gas reductions
during the Council of the Federation meeting in Quebec City.
    To emphasize the need for real action on climate change to the premiers,
Greenpeace activists will have a banner at the Council meeting highlighting
the KYOTOplus campaign outside the Chateau Frontenac at 9 a.m. Thursday
morning.
    "The federal government has failed to address climate change," said
Arthur Sandborn, Greenpeace climate campaigner. "That's why we are in Quebec
City pushing our KYOTOplus campaign with the premiers."    .
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Stelmach getting heat from all sides

Posted by mhudema on July 17, 2008

Get off Alberta’s back:MLA
The Stelmach government is getting it from all sides as both domestic and international criticism mount against Alberta’s oil sands development.

Christopher Heffernan
Wednesday July 16, 2008

The Stelmach government is getting it from all sides as both domestic and international criticism mount against Alberta’s oil sands development.
Lloyd Snelgrove is not only a cabinet minister and close friend to the premier, but he has also been tasked by his boss to “create a strategic plan for developing the oil sands region.”
This weighty task puts the Vermilion-Lloydminster MLA front-and-center in the debate over the CO2 emissions being created by Alberta’s massive oil sands projects.

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The Rebirth of the Electric Car

Posted by mhudema on July 17, 2008


Mitsubishi’s i MiEV Electric Car is Ahead of Schedule
A couple months ago, we got our hands on Mitsubishi’s roadmap for its i MiEV electric car. The plan was to lease a few units to fleet customers first in 2009 and then launch it in 2010 (with a focus on Japan, but also in North-America and Europe), but reality is turning out better than even the optimists thought.

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Disaster Capitalism: State of Extortion

Posted by mhudema on July 17, 2008

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

President Bush As Extortionist in Chief?

Disaster Capitalism: State of Extortion

By Naomi Klein

Once oil passed $140 a barrel, even the most rabidly right-wing media hosts had to prove their populist credo by devoting a portion of every show to bashing Big Oil. Some have gone so far as to invite me on for a friendly chat about an insidious new phenomenon: “disaster capitalism.” It usually goes well-until it doesn’t.

For instance, “independent conservative” radio host Jerry Doyle and I were having a perfectly amiable conversation about sleazy insurance companies and inept politicians when this happened: “I think I have a quick way to bring the prices down,” Doyle announced. “We’ve invested $650 billion to liberate a nation of 25 million people. Shouldn’t we just demand that they give us oil? There should be tankers after tankers backed up like a traffic jam getting into the Lincoln Tunnel, the Stinkin’ Lincoln, at rush hour with thank-you notes from the Iraqi government . Why don’t we just take the oil? We’ve invested it liberating a country. I can have the problem solved of gas prices coming down in ten days, not ten years.”

There were a couple of problems with Doyle’s plan, of course. The first was that he was describing the biggest stickup in world history. The second, that he was too late: “We” are already heisting Iraq’s oil, or at least are on the cusp of doing so.

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EcoSanity: Pimping the Tar Sands

Posted by mhudema on July 17, 2008

EcoSanity runs video of the Premier of Alberta pimping for tar sands exploitation and intersperses it with funny, snarky comments about his bald-faced lies (Yes, they will deeply respect the environment, right.) Added bonus: A protester gets ejected from the meeting.

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Influx of Migrant Workers Open Door to Abuse

Posted by mhudema on July 17, 2008

IPS News: CANADA: Influx of Migrant Workers Opens Door to Abuses

Western Canada’s construction boom, spurred on by the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver and oil sands development in Alberta, has led to a massive increase in foreign temporary workers coming to the region.The government agency Statistics Canada reports that for the 12-month period ending in March, international migration was the main factor driving population growth in Alberta, making it the fastest growing province in Canada.
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