Published: Saturday, Feb. 28 2009 12:00 a.m. MST
Gee, what a surprise. Bennett doesn't think environmental concerns should stop
oil sand development. I've got a great idea...how about he drinks the polluted
water, breathes the emissions, and lives next door to the open pit mine so he
understands why there are environmental and human consequences to irresponsible
development. No wonder nobody listens to our Utah representatives...they live
outside of reality.
It's a good thing that the feds are involved with energy development in Southern
Utah. After seeing how Utah botched the environmental planning phase of the
Legacy Highway, can you imagine the consequences of Utah state shale oil
exploitation down south. We have the time, any shale oil use should be done
If we do not do anything that may 'harm' the environment, then we will do
nothing except die. Ther is a reason that life expectancy continues to rise.
I love the quote about letting the free market decide about the development --
if so, why does oil sands require so much government subsidies and help? This
picture attached to the article showing Fort McMurray's open-pit mine is truly
disgusting -- worse than the coal fields and ugly mines we already have in Utah
and Wyoming. Why are solar panels and wind turbines ugly enough to nix their
development but the stentch and ugly views of open-pits acceptable? What's missing in this article is how the oil sands are produced, which
requires freezing the perimeter of a field (to not allow toxins to pollute water
supplies) so that the interior can be "cooked" to literally melt the oil out of
the sand. It will require so much coal-fired electricity (and water for steam
and cooling boilers) to do, that it will drive up need for power plants, etc.
With our nation likely to switch to plug-in vehicles over the next decade,
government needs to decide what technologies are most promising to subsidize by
the time they're commercial -- batteries and improvements in our electricity
system makes more sense than this!
The article is misleading. Utah does not have oil sands like Canada. We have oil
shale which is mined completely different.You do not open pit mine oil shale.
Yet another article that quotes the PEMBINA Institute. Do people not realize
that they are nothing but a few ENVIRONMENTAL HACKS. Any opinion from them is
always 100% biased. You will never get a balanced economy vs environment answer.
See for your self, they will never say anything positive about oil/gas
production, so their opinion is WORTHLESS.
The truth about any energy development is in the Energy In vs. Energy Out
equation. Forget about all the other issues. If it takes more barrels of energy
to mine, process, transport, etc. the energy that is being produced, you are not
adding to the supply, you continue to take away. Oil sands and oil shales are
two energy resources that will take more energy to bring to the market than they
will provide. Many will argue that the jobs created and monies taken in lease
contracts will be better for us than loosing more energy than we are making.
Environmentalists can scream about the tragedy to the environment. But I really
think everyone on both sides of the argument should be agreeing that if it takes
more energy to produce than the energy produced it is a loosing proposition. Put people to work in other government sponsored job creation grants and
subsidies. Develop other sources of renewable energy. Our state should never
have to depend on such a poor choice of development, when we have the tremendous
knowledge base and such a great entrepreneurial ability. Quit beating around the
leaves and start at the root!!
Read this month's National Geographic story on the oil sands industry in
Alberta, Canada. How on God's good earth can gaining 1 measly barrel of oil
from tons of sands be considered economic? Do the math! It just doesn't hold
up. Then add to that, all the land and environmental reclamation... And the
recycled water used for the oil extractive process that sits in holding ponds
until the next round of use IS seeping into the water table and causing havoc...
but back to the economics. Where is the economic viability that's
being claimed for oils sands? Anytime someone delves more deeply into finding
out the numbers get real weird and squirrelly. Fact is, taking tons of dirt,
while doing open scraping of the terrain, to get a single barrel of oil just
doesn't make any economic sense... that is unless the extraction companies are
using your tax dollars, as Corporate Welfare, to subsidize their so called
profits. Now that's socialism if ever there was... which is also called
Corporate Socialism. Social or Corporate, 'socialsim' by any prefix
is still socialism all the same, whether Democratic (Social) or Republican
(Corporate), still the same!
Having the Pembina Insitute advise on oil sands development is like having Bin
Laden advise on your national security. If Anonymous above did do the
math,he/she would see that the average cost of production of sweet, (low/no
sulphur), synthetic crude oil from mined oil sand bitumen is currently about
US$40-50/bbl. Throw in the costs of maintaining military security over Middle
Easterm imports, (since long before 9/11), and the US has been paying about
$100/bbl for a very long time.
Interesting quote from Bennett about being "behind the curve." We are sadly
behind the curve on renewable energy. Europe is decades ahead of us. The best
wind and solar energy ideas and practical installations are in Europe,
particularly in Denmark and Spain. Utah has also fallen behind the curve in
thinking about how renewable energy can drive economic recovery and good jobs.
The Danish and Spanish companies are building factories in the US to put supply
close to the construction sites. They will be located in Iowa, Michigan,
Colorado, Nebraska. Wyoming, Idaho, to name a few. Where was Utah in trying to
recruit these companies to come in and provide good jobs. Instead, we get
Drilling will only give Big Oil more political power. It's bad for the
environment, and it will not solve our energy problems. The United States has
only a small percentage of the world's oil and not enough to meet our energy
needs. We need renewable energy and we need to stop the Big Oil propaganda. And you Utahans know what Natural Gas is like... it turns your walls
yellow. It's not good for the environment either. Drilling will not
cause gas prices to fall. Driving LESS causes them to fall. --Pamela
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