Questions about oily business aims

Good thing we have The Tyee and other independent media. If we did not, politicians and industrialists would have an unrestricted pass to conduct business in ways that best line their own pockets.

Corporate journalists, traditional defenders of public interests, hive themselves away and belch nonsense extolling a de-regulated system where the wealthy few get wealthier and fewer, while the rest of us fall further behind

Andrew Nikiforuk, an independent journalist who owes no favours to the oil industry, is certainly not idle or hived away. This week in The Tyee, Nikiforuk asks eleven important question about unrestrained tar sands development:

  • 1.   Why aren’t some oil sands revenues being set aside for future Canadians?
  • 2.   Are we harming our democracy?
  • 3.   How do we prevent ‘Dutch Disease’ 1 from eroding vital parts of Canada’s economy?
  • 4.   Have you examined the geopolitical risks of tying our fate to China as superpower?
  • 5.   Are we boarding an economic roller-coaster that could crash?
  • 6.   Why aren’t we taking a strategy that would directly shore up our own energy security?
  • 7.   Why raise fears about charities whose foreign funding is a tiny percentage of what China invests in Canada’s economy and politics?
  • 8.   Does becoming more oil rich mean we also will become more militarized?
  • 9.   Have we abandoned commitments to lower carbon emissions to help prevent catastrophic climate change?
  • 10. Why not refine it here, creating jobs and lowering risks?
  • 11. Were you elected to hasten pollution and increase cancer risks for Canadians?

1 Primarily associated with a major natural resource extraction, it results from a rise in foreign currency that affects price competitiveness, meaning movement of manufacturing jobs to lower cost countries and increased imports. Non-resource industries are damaged by resource-based industries.

Visit The Tyee and read through the brief analyses that underlie Nikiforuk’s questions.

Categories: Enbridge, Norway

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5 replies »

  1. Nikiforuk's questions are all relevant and they're all avoided like the plague in Canada's Petro-Parliament. The Norwegians have amassed one of the very largest sovereign wealth funds because they put all their oil revenues in it. They tax their citizens to pay their government expenses including their social safety net. The attitude of Norwegians is that money belongs to generations yet to come and it isn't theirs to squander.

    An economic roller coaster? A panel of leading British investors, scientists and politicians last week warned the Governor of the Bank of England that fossil fuel assets are sub-prime. If we're to have any chance of avoiding runaway global warming we can still consume only some 20% of known fossil fuel reserves. The rest is surplus to mankind's survival and therefore essentially worthless.

    Why not refine it here? Because the companies involved aren't Canadian and they already have surplus refining capacity elsewhere. They want dilbit pumped to their refineries. It's the same thinking behind Harper's relaxation of Canadian immigration laws to allow Big Oil to import Third World “guest workers” to avoid having to hire Canadians at a fair wage.

    They're all important questions. The government can't afford to answer any of them.


  2. The fact that Harper the Dictator is pushing OUR resources to FOREIGNERS is what is going to kibosh the gateway project.
    China wishes to rape us, and HSH is their pimp. But we can push back and we will.


  3. Norway cares about their people while, Harper cares about Harper and to hell with the people.

    China wants to refine the dirty tar in China, for cheap labor, and even more cheap child labor. The U.S. wants to also refine the oil and sell it to other country's.

    China is sending their people to school, to learn English. They get the coal mining jobs. The U.S. brought their own workers, for the smelter tear down, in Kitimat.

    If the seven mines going into, Northern BC are Chinese or American owned, they will bring their own miners.

    80% of the BC citizen's are supporting the F.N….to keep the atrocities of the Enbridge pipeline and the dirty oil tankers, out of our province.

    Harper and Campbell financially destroyed BC. All we have left is the beauty, our marine life and our woodland wild animals. Their filthy diseased fish farm are killing the wild salmon. Campbell's theft and sale of our rivers has destroyed, important salmon runs

    Everything Harper and Campbell touch, they foul.


  4. Statoil is also involved in an oil mining venture in northern Alberta. They are the Norwegian state owned oil producer. Having said that, the Norwegians have done a way better job of managing their industry for the benefit of all citizens rather than just for the benefit of the folks in the big chairs in Calgary and Houston. Meanwhile in Canada, our highest producing provinces are deep in debt as is the country. Much profit made and taken out of country at the expense of taxpayers. Same worker/taxpayers that are being told to work for two more years and get ready to pay for more of your own medical expenses by the very folks that call themselves conservative. As long as the worker/taxpayer is the one taking the cuts it must be ok. Looks like we could all stand a bit more Norwegian style look after ourselves first conservativism rather than Harper's type.


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