A delusional remark in a CBC article:
“Canada, which has long been criticized for being heavily dependent on shipping natural resources to the rest of the world.”
Our Prime Minister, and Saskatchewan’s Premier spend millions, hundreds of millions actually, to tell Canadians and the world how many resources we should be sending elsewhere.
Consider the stat from Gasland II, where about 60% of some wells’ casings are expected to fail within 30 years.
Naturally that stat is going to err on the sensational, but even the more conservative ~10% estimates are extremely worrying.
“Leaky plumbing on energy wells seen as threat to climate, water and resources”
“Serge Fortier has been trying for years to raise awareness about leaking wells along the St. Lawrence River. Nothing has been quite as effective as setting them on fire.
“The reaction came very rapidly,” says Fortier, an environmental activist whose fiery demonstration near Ste-Francoise has prompted the Quebec government to acknowledge it has a problem – one that regulatory officials are often not keen to discuss.” And industry officials play this ad instead of discussing the problem:
(The ad playing on the Gazette report is by TransCanada promoting their disastrous Energy East project. They claim “the more you know, the more the pipeline makes sense”, when they mean, “the more propaganda we produce you see, the more likely you’ll fall in line.”)
Basically our options are constant monitoring of hidden/lost wells that produce no more value, or STOP making new holes. Canada is making tens of thousands of new planned holes. When you’re in a hole the first step is to stop digging.
Severn Suzuki said it well at her UN speech 2 decades ago:
No. They are victims of circumstance, and despite their wealth and fame, they alone cannot change ‘the system’.
A voice from the Facebook-sphere intones: “I appreciate your commitment and respect what you are trying to achieve but bashing fossil fuels while you continue to use them adds no value to your cause.”
Not true. As Shane’s made plain, there’s no means for someone to hop off the oil bandwagon, because we’ve built our society around it for generations. It will take generations to leave it behind (completely), but that isn’t an argument to stop trying. Quite the opposite, it’s time to get started in a more serious way than the last generation.
I’m sick to death of the people mindlessly attacking people like Gore, Young, and Suzuki for “using oil” while speaking against it. Obviously they have to use mass transportation and mass communication presently available to reach people. To command that they stop today, or be hypocrites, is a very thinly veiled attempt to outright silence them.
There’s a particularly nasty and brainless bunch on Twitter who earlier this year said I should shut up because I owe my life to oil. Bow down, and tremble like them before thy oily god. They owe their lives to a stable climate and clean water, so why then do they work against the availability of those supposed ‘commodities’ while using what’s left of them? These same twerps are the sorts who claim that “CO(2) isn’t a pollutant because plants eat it“, except they’d never agree to be trapped in a contained environment with “too much” of it, or contemplate its greenhouse effect.
Canada, a decade ago, used to do more good than bad in the wider world. Now we’re an international wrecking crew, teaching countries how to waste their water supplies on international disasters like shale oil.
One thing we share is an abundance of unsafe Quebec chrysotile AKA asbestos. Most of the world stopped using the miracle mineral once they realized what a global disaster its widespread use had been. Inhaled asbestos fibres cause lung cancer. There is some ongoing effort four decades after its use in new products was stopped in Canada, to remove it from buildings we live, work, and play in.
The effort to mitigate harm from asbestos has its limits, even in a developed country like Canada. An often overlooked source of asbestos fibres in our homes has taken a backseat, while our backsides have [statistically] been suffering from it. Over half of Regina’s drinking water supply pipes are made with Asbestos Cement (AC). 500km of AC is in our city. Edmonton has twice as many kilometers of the undesirable piping. The City of Regina has admitted it has no idea how much asbestos is coming out of our taps at homes across the city.
If asbestos is consumed in sufficient amounts, it’s been shown by government health researchers to lead to polyps in human intestines. Is Regina dickering over a quarter billion dollar Waste Water Treatment Plant deal, while our drinking Water Treatment Plant can’t even hope to address the probable health disaster taking place under our city streets as water is delivered to many of our homes through AC? How many billion dollars will it take to replace over 500 kms of undesirable water piping that is likely to lead to increased rates of tumours?
What has the City of Regina done since the Leader Post wrote about this issue in 2012? Can you even find the latest Water and Sewer Budget on the regina.ca website, in a year of major proposed sewer system changes?
Reginans, and indeed many Canadians, have become “test animals in a massive biological experiment involving a known carcinogen.” -Barbara Robson, Winnipeg Free Press reporter in 1987.
Are we safe? We don’t know for sure without knowing the amount of asbestos breaking free from our pipes, but there are many logical conclusions from the facts we have, to conclude we are not safe today. This is an urgent health concern that has been ignored, possibly due to its sheer scope. When we start to fix the problem, who gets safer water first? The ethical questions are extreme. The extent of the problem has been known for decades, and we’ve not even meaningfully begun to deal with the reconstruction of our water system to free it of asbestos contamination.