Tar Sand [TS]

 9. sault in reply to outsidethebox 11:05 AM 3/6/13

Look, this has nothing to do with belief. The science on climate change is clear and opening up billions of tons of stored carbon in the Tar Sands is a really bad idea. To stay under 2C of warming that everyone agrees is getting into the danger zone, we'll have to leave around 75% of the remaining recoverable fossil fuel reserves in the ground. 2C might still mean that we have a mostly ice-free Arctic in the summer, sea levels might increase by almost a meter displacing millions of people, and food shortages / "dustbowlification" become common. I don't believe this; scientific papers projecting the effects of warming keep coming out that paint an increasingly dire picture of our potential future.

As a major source of buried carbon, the Tar Sands (and other unconventional, DIRTY sources of oil) do not make sense. We have the technology to begin transitioning off oil and we should be investing in them, not in ever dirtier ways to continue our wasteful and destructive status quo. For starters, it takes 1 unit of clean(er) natural gas energy to extract 4 units of bitumen. Then you have to move it to a refinery 1000 or more miles away in an expensive and leak-prone pipeline as illustrated in this article. THEN you have to refine it into gas / diesel / etc. BTW, it is estimated that the energy used in JUST the refining step for each gallon of gas can be used to propel an electric car just as far, if not farther, than a gas-powered vehicle can go on that gallon of fuel. Finally, you have to truck the fuel to gas stations where the average person puts 10 - 20 gallons of it into a 2 - 3 ton machine that throws away 80% of the energy in the fuel as waste heat...on a good day!

Look, let's not put our natural wonders and our groundwater at risk just to make gigantic corporations even more gigantic. Tar Sands crude is already causing a glut of supply in the Midwestern US, lowerng prices there. These companies only want pipelines to the Gulf Coast and the Pacific so they can export fuels to South America and China. They want to saddle us with a worsening climate, the risk of pipeline leakage and all the pollution from the oil refineries just so they can pocket even more money...Oh, and they want over $4B in corporate welfare every year to do it too.