Thursday, May 10, 2012

Tar Sands - The Great Canadian Giveaway

When Tar Sands sludge leaves Canada so does most of the wealth associated with it.   Most of the Tar Sands is foreign owned, most of the revenue goes straight into foreign pockets.

More than two-thirds of all oilsands production in Canada is owned by foreign entities, sending a majority of the industry's profits out of the country, says a new analysis released Thursday by a British Columbia-based conservation group.

The research by Forest Ethics Advocacy was based on an analysis of shareholder information in January 2012 from Bloomberg Professional of more than a dozen companies, including nine with headquarters in Canada, and six with their head offices in other countries. It found 71 per cent of the ownership of oilsands production was foreign, while the foreign-based companies controlled 24.2 per cent of the sector's production.

"Some notably Canadian oil companies, such as Suncor, Canadian Oil Sands and Husky, are predominantly owned by non-Canadians," said the report. "The data also shows us that more than half of Canada's oil and gas revenue goes to foreign entities."

Forest Ethics Advocacy said that its own analysis on ownership demonstrates that recent efforts by Harper's government to weaken Canada's environmental protection laws and speed up approval of industrial projects are not in the national interest.

"Since the beginning of the year, our federal government has either cut or gutted every piece of environmental legislation designed to protect our land, air, and water while aggressively pushing for the expansion of the tar sands and the building of new pipelines, such as the controversial Enbridge Northern Gateway pipeline and supertanker project," concluded the report. "Harper has claimed to do this in the name of Canada's national interest while attacking anyone who disagrees."

So just who are the Harper Conservatives toiling so assiduously for?   For you?   For me?   For Canada?  No for Foreign Oil and, in Comrade Steve's case, for the People's Republic of China.


crf said...

Get it out, as cheap as possible, as quickly as possible, bribing a few provinces with a bit of money fractionally gleaned from their own resources.

If we had a national industrial and energy policy these less than ideal way the oil sands are being developed would be made obvious. Of course the media has been for years conditioning Canadians to snort dirisively as such notions. Heaven forfend public resources being used to maximally benefit an underserving public.

BTW: Shipping raw logs to China while our sawmills turn into crematoriums is a good deal for jobs in British Columbia. I swear its true!

The Mound of Sound said...

I still think the obstacle to refining bitumen in Canada is emissions-driven, not cost. I worked in an Imperial Oil refinery inthe 60's and, even then, it was a decidedly non-labour intensive operation. Most of the production was automated run by engineers sitting in comfortable control rooms. Those of us who worked in the machinery were about half clean-up and half mechanical (welders and pipefitters mainly). I never saw labour as being a huge component of production cost which makes me wonder why we go through the elaborate dil-bit route with all that extra pumping and shipping?