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Down and Dirty with Tar Sands Pipelines

Bill DiBenedetto headshotWords by Bill DiBenedetto
Investment & Markets
The whole thing about tar sands is perplexing. It is widely considered the dirtiest oil on earth, is immensely difficult and dangerous to extract and then transport and it perpetuates — at great cost in terms of health, safety and the environment — an oil-centric mindset at the expense of advancing cleaner, renewable options. So how is it a sustainable model? The only reason is that Big Oil says so and has the money and power to push ahead with it. And please spare the we-need-the-oil-and-the-jobs argument. In less than two minutes the Sierra Club has exposed the absurdity of tar sands in a terse and frightening YouTube video that’s part of its Beyond Oil campaign: http://youtu.be/DCq015rc_lk As the Sierra Club says, “It’s time to move America beyond oil.” And the Keystone XL plan to develop Canada’s tar sands  won’t benefit America’s energy position—the club’s video notes that the oil will not move via pipeline to America, it will move through America to foreign markets. There’s no way tar sands development can survive an honest cost-benefit analysis—but Big Oil cares not a whit about the cost in the first place and wants to maintain its stranglehold on the energy market and the energy consumer. It has bigger fish to fry and an empire to preserve. [Image: Oil sands by 4BlueEyes Pete Williamson via Flickr]
Bill DiBenedetto headshotBill DiBenedetto

Writer, editor, reader and generally good (okay mostly good, well sometimes good) guy trying to get by.

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