Tar Sands and Keystone Pipeline Destruction to Mother Earth

30 03 2012

Been meaning to write about this struggle for some time now.  The Keystone pipeline has received lot’s of media attention and mainstream support from various sectors of U.S. working class.  Several celebrities have even jumped on the bandwagon, by participating in public disobedience or direct actions in Washington DC.  So I am definitely behind the curve here, but the more people are blogging about this issue the more communities will be informed.

These are huge topics that many have written about and the following is only a teaser.  I recommend people do more research to learn more details about these issues, but hopefully the following will get you started and interested in these important struggles.

Tar Sands – There is much to know about the Tar Sands, but simply put this is a massive process that destroys mother earth.  It takes place mainly in the Alberta province of Canada.  Basically it involves removing crude oil from the earth’s surface.  However, to remove that crude oil from the surface is a highly destructive process.  There are two methods that I’m aware of, depending on how deep the oil is.  The oil is mixed in with other elements, mainly soil or sand the process involves using other chemicals or natural gas to separate the oil from the soil, but one of the main elements used to separate the oil is WATER.  Millions of gallons of water are used a day to separate the oil.

When we think about efforts to conserve water, we should consider the amount of water corporations use to extract oil from the earth’s surface.  This water is also contaminated once it’s been used, but it goes back into the system and causes massive destruction to drinking water for people and animals.

Another element of the environment that is destroyed is mass amounts of forest that are clear-cut in order to get to the soil.  Again, this is highly destructive to the animals and ecosystem that in turn affects us.

For all intensive purposes, the Tar Sands oil extraction process is the worst thing corporations can be doing to the environment in Alberta, Canada.  We must remember why they are doing this.  The ultimate goal of companies involved in these projects is PROFIT and to maximize those profits at any and all cost, to the earth and human life.  There is nothing that would stop these jerks from continuing the destruction of mother earth as long as they keep making money off extracting and selling crude oil.

The Keystone Pipeline – Again, I won’t get into a lot of details with this either, but I recommend reading more about the issue.  This pipeline would basically transport the crude oil extracted from the Tar Sands to the Gulf-Coast of the United States.  This again is huge project and would involve digging a huge whole all the way from Alberta, Canada to Texas, USA.  Then putting piping in that hole to transport the oil.  The pipe would go beneath water ways, forest and other fragile environments, including crossing several Indian reservations in both countries.  All to allow the transport of crude oil in order to be sold and exported to other places in the world.  But ultimately, in order for these companies to make huge profits.

Capitalism is the system that allows both of these types of projects to exist and to be supported by the governments of both countries.  Imagen what we could do if we put that amount of resources and energy into building projects that would meet people’s needs.  The city of San Diego where I live can’t even build a damn shelter for the thousands of homeless people living on the street or pay for the number of teachers and counselors needed for students to get a quality education.  Only because it chooses not to, because there is no profit in it.

Join the Native communities from so-called “Canada” and the “United States” in standing up against these projects and all other projects that seek to maximize profits at the expense of mother earth and humanity.

Also, a reminder that the 2012 Peace and Dignity Journeys will be running in honor of the Water this year and we will be bringing light to these types of issues across Turtle Island.

For more details on both these projects I recommend Indigenous Environmental Network.  Here is a link to article on the Tar Sands and one on the Keystone XL Pipeline project


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