Compilation: Tar Sands KILL – Facts & Resources

“Exploitation of tar sands would make it implausible to stabilize climate and avoid disastrous global climate impacts” … “Phase out of emissions from coal is itself an enormous challenge. However, if the tar sands are thrown into the mix, it is essentially game over.”

~ Dr. James Hansen (Big deal climate guy)


Alberta, Canada’s Athabasca oil / tar sands ‘development’ (devastation) is the largest, most destructive, single industrial, capital investment and energy project on Earth.

Tar sands exploitation targets a total area the size of Florida (or country of England) and decimates huge expanses of boreal forest into toxic wasteland in violation of the traditional land and water rights of Indigenous peoples and other frontline communities who suffer and die from direct threats to their health and livelihood.

The insane, resource intensive and rapacious extraction process causes 3 to 4.5 times more global heat forcing emissions (an incredible 36 million tons per day, equivalent to 1.3 million cars) than conventional oil and requires 2 to 5 barrels of fresh water — a soon-to-be-scarce resource in a climate extreme-threatened world — to make just ONE BARREL of oil. (2011 production rate: 2.7 million barrels per day.)

The tar sands are the largest source of projected new greenhouse gas pollution in Canada and a rapacious accelerator of the already deadly impacts of climate ‘change’ (breakdown, disruption, destabilization).

The clear-cut decimation of one of the largest remaining boreal forest ecosystems and global carbon sinks (storehouses) in order to access and steam-force out the 10-12% of bitumen deep in the sand and clay below with massive amounts of fresh water powered by natural gas (in 2007, 1 billion cubic feet of natural gas per day) is comparable in approach to a heroin user’s demented sense of reason and self-destructive addiction.

Most of the production is exported to the U.S. and this addict/dealer ‘arrangement’ is the primary reason why the current Canadian government is a major obstructer at international climate negotiations and a shameful embarrassment to our nation.

Perhaps worst of all, investment into projects like the tar sands are massive obstacles that delay humanity’s one-time chance to initiate emergency global investment in, and rapid transformation to, a clean, survivable, zero-carbon world before imminent and irreversible climate tipping points are soon passed.

And while all the big oil companies report obscene, record profits and consumers pay ever higher prices, these companies invest a huge portion of their dividends to buy back billions of dollars worth of their own stock in order to drive up its value.


Difficult as it is to communicate, absorb, process, accept, and as shrill / alarmist as it may sound, our shared atmosphere is on an accelerating course to reach a state of potentially unsurvivable, global climate extremes during the lives of today’s children and teens.

No less than the fate of all generations of all peoples and most species hangs in the balance TODAY.  And only emergency international action at emergency (world war-time) speed FAST *may be* proportional enough to confront the scale, scope and urgency of what is ALREADY the greatest crime against humanity, most life and most future life EVER. (Compilation: Betrayal of Life.)

The continued operation and exploitation of the Canada’s destructive, energy and emissions intensive, wasteful and toxic to process tar sands encourages the extraction of oil from tar sands and shale oil worldwide. They are key to the oil industry’s ability to maintain their stranglehold on global energy supply and prevent the necessary transition to a cleaner energy world.

Given the limited window of opportunity we now face, courageous, progressive leadership must overcome denial and resist the lures of short-term profit in favour of a rapid and dramatic transformation to as near to a zero-carbon global economy as possible.

To attempt to prevent the worst perils of climate breakdown, disruption, destabilization, we must change course.  We must shut down Canada’s tar sands.

More Videos

Articles/Blogs: Canada’s Oil/Tar Sands in Alberta

Articles/Blogs: Alberta to Texas Keystone XL pipeline, Climate & Environmental Crimeline



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