Gallery: TransCanada Boss Says Keystone XL Pipeline Will Have ‘No Impac...

 

We have heard some tall tales in our time, but this one reaches the stratosphere. On Tuesday, Alex Pourbaix, TransCanada’s president for energy and oil pipelines, said that “You could shut down oil sands production tomorrow and it would have absolutely no measurable impact on climate change.” He stated that opponents of the pipeline have grossly inflated its significance on the issue of global warming. His claim came after a rally on Sunday in Washington by climate activists that drew upwards of 50,000 people. The quote was taken during a forum sponsored by a manufacturing group that supports the tar sands project.

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  1. WBrooke February 20, 2013 at 5:21 pm

    The two camps are arguing different things. Pourbaix is correct in saying that the emissions associated with production of heavy oil is a small component of Canada\\\’s total emissions. The protesters are also correct in saying that the production of heavy oil is associated with 20% higher emissions than conventional oil.

    However, the real issue is not in the emissions associated with the production of oil, but rather with the burning of the oil by the end user. The emissions associated with burning fossil fuels from ANY source dwarfs the emissions from the production of that fossil fuel. So long as people (you and me and everyone else) drive around in private cars and demand air travel to be part of our lives, then we are driving the lion\\\’s share of emissions whether from oil sands or conventional oil.

    It is very tempting to vilify Big Oil, and they no doubt deserve consternation, but really they just provide a consumer product and the demand for that product is driven by us collectively.

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