Monday, February 17, 2014

Tar Sands Reclamation: Was Neil Young So Wrong He Was Really (Really) Right?


In case you missed it, the fine folks from Ethical Oil have a website up called 'Neil Young Lies'.

And one of the 'lies' they are making a big fuss about (and getting some proMedia wurlitzerization of) is the following:

“The problem is the reclamation part (of the oilsands) there is no reclamation.” - Neil Young 


The finest of the very finest fine folks (who won't say, exactly, where they get their big money from, but who will take your cash through PayPal) then go on to tell us that 'only' 767 square kilometers have been 'disturbed' by tar sands development and then follow that up with a bullet point that 77m (sic) square km is under 'active' reclamation.

Which, according to these most ethical of folks' very own numbers means that 690 square kilometers are NOT under active reclamation.

Which would make Mr. Young at 90% right, even if you accepted the self-declared ethicalists version of things.

Which is a pretty solid grade in most schools, even that Calgary one that plays the big Straussian game in a vainglorious effort to generate the ideological gravitas, if you want to call it that, for much of this stuff.


On their very own website, the high priests and priestesses of ethics are also good enough to point us to the Province of Alberta's site on this matter where we learn that it is actually 844 square km, or 84,395 hectares that  have been been ripped up by tar sands development so far.

And how much of that land has the Province of Alberta actually 'certified' as being actually reclaimed?

Why, that would be a grand total of...

Wait for it...

...104 hectares.

Which means that Mr Young was actually 99.9% correct with his statement, as quoted by the high priests and priestesses above.

Which, of course, also means that, despite what the good Mr. Ezra Levant has to say on the TeeVee, Mr. Young was actually more pure than Ivory Snow on this matter.

As for this land under 'active' reclamation dodge that is used as deflector spin on this matter?


When I heard him talk about this at some length with Jian Ghomeshi this was Mr. Young's real point when he noted that most of the so-called 'active' reclamation that he saw when he, unlike Mr. Ghomeshi, actually visited the Tar Sands was, in his opinion, little more than a cosmetic crock of codswallop.



Anonymous said...

Brilliant smack-down RossK!


RossK said...


'Tis really not very hard.

All you have to do is actually take about five minutes to look at their actual sources.

Of course, the fact that the great majority of the proMedia won't do this is what drives me crazy.


Anonymous said...

Yup, paper tigers...


Anonymous said...

And, the news vacuum in BC just got a little worse: the CBC has not allowed commenting on the Paragon story. It would have been an education to have comments (and hence links) up for a story that truly illustrates how business is done in Shameless Columbia.

This is just sad:

CBC: "Something amazing has been happening in the CBC News commenting community over the last 6 the last six months, the volume of comments has doubled. CBC News reporting and story-telling is increasingly becoming the starting point for national conversation..."

Amazing? So they limit commenting to save "costs"? I question the real motive behind shutting down comments. Why alienate your readership to save dollars that could be found elsewhere...say, in limiting the travel of their media darlings, as enchanting as they are...

Steve said...

What Neil has also highlighted is this project makes no economic sense. Unless your Tony Sopraono selling sporting goods.

If they were oilsands they would be a liquid. Or are solids now liquids when gasbags say so?

RossK said...

Truly bizarre SH--

I wonder if they received a 'chill' letter which would not be a new tactic from the fine folks who populate the League of Extraordinary Cronies.


Great point Steve--



Anonymous said...

You can go to this site to see the destruction of the Tar Sands.

RossK said...

Thanks for passing that along Anon-Above.