Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Diane Corbin · University of Alberta It seems most people have bought into the fiction the politicians and the industry have created about the economy to care that o&g is one of the most destructive industries on the planet. I don’t even understand why fracking is legal. When will the majority of the population finally realize that we can’t breathe, drink, or eat the money produced by this industry? Maybe when they’re choking on toxic air or there’s no more clean water or food left to buy? Or will they continue in their apathetic somnolence until the earthquakes caused by such extensive fracking destroy everything? I realize I haven’t provided much in the way of details, but the impacts of this dirty, toxic, destructive industry are enormous and far reaching. As it is, people die every day from the impacts of the petroleum industry, particularly where tar sands is concerned. Fracking will either pollute all of our drinking water or deplete it all. One way or another, we need to smarten up. There are sustainable energy technologies to support our lifestyles and boost our economy. Why are we not putting more effort into developing those? (Because petroleum is easy.) Like · Reply · 19m

http://edmontonjournal.com/news/politics/alberta-creates-worlds-largest-protected-boreal-forest?fb_comment_id=fbc_1953374664736843_1953571284717181_1953571284717181#f112c6e8c82a704

Alberta creates world's largest protected boreal forest

The Birch Mountain Wetlands are shown in a handout photo. Alberta is creating the world's largest boreal forest preserve with the announcement of a series of new wildland parks in the province's northeast. The five new or expanded areas adjoin Wood Buffalo National Park and add up to 13,000 square kilometres of forest, wetland, lakes and rivers. THE CANADIAN PRESS
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Alberta has designated four new provincial parks in the province’s north, creating the world’s largest contiguous protected boreal forest. 
About the size of New Brunswick, the 6.7-million-hectare chunk of forest builds on Wood Buffalo National Park north of Fort McMurray. 
The rejig expands the Birch Mountains park, and adds Kazan, Richardson, Dillon River and Birch River wildland provincial parks to the map. 
It’s the largest addition to the Alberta Parks system in history.
The new protected areas were identified by the previous government in the Lower Athabasca Regional Plan (LARP) in 2012. 
That plan had “some enormous problems to solve,” Environment Minister Shannon Phillips said at the announcement in Edmonton on Tuesday, so her government took a fresh look at it.
At the time, Syncrude, Tallcree First Nation, the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) and the federal government were already at the table.
“This had been circling around for awhile as a proposal,” Phillips said. 
“It took us coming to the idea to push it forward and say, ‘It’s more than a good idea, we’re going to do it.’”

Indigenous communities key 

After rejigging the LARP, the Environment and Parks department took the updated plan to communities. 
“What I heard was that people wanted the protected areas … but they wanted a voice in how those protected areas were managed, and they wanted to incorporate traditional land use and traditional knowledge,” Phillips said.
What evolved was a unique level of co-operation, which will see Indigenous communities partner with the government in a series of management arrangements to look after the new parks.
The government is also exploring an Indigenous Guardian Program, through which First Nations and Métis peoples are hired to monitor the areas, help maintain the lands and provide education and outreach to park visitors.
Tallcree First Nation Chief Rupert Meneen said the collaboration aligns closely with his tribal government’s values. 
His nation relinquished its Birch River area timber licence and quota so the new Birch River park could be created. Syncrude gave $2.3 million to the NCC to cover off that quota payment. 
“The boreal forest holds greater value to the First Nation for exercising our traditional way of life and the quiet enjoyment of our treaty rights,” Meneen told reporters Tuesday.
“It’s all about preserving lands and saving what’s there — the caribou there and the wildlife there. That’s what’s important.” 
Bill Loutitt, CEO of McMurray Metis Local 1935, called the co-operative effort a “historic opportunity.”
“The new wildland provincial parks ensure Indigenous peoples have places to hunt and fish with their families for generations to come,” he said Tuesday. 
For Phillips, the new parks and how they will be managed speak to conservation in the era of truth and reconciliation.
“This piece isn’t just about that protected area, but those ongoing conversations about co-operative management and how conservation looks in the 21st century,” she said.
“Conservation areas are as much about wildlife, biodiversity and climate resilience … as they are about how we support traditional land use, traditional knowledge, our treaty obligations and First Nations treaty rights.”


Julie Ali · 
I'm curious how much land the tailings ponds cover not to mention the orphan wells. What about land impacted by fracking?
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Diane Corbin · 
As of September 2017, tailings ponds covered 220 sq. kms. Expansion would create more. So, how much of this new parkland is impacted by that. How much of that land and everything on it is toxic? Not sure I would want to hunt and eat off of there until studies prove that it’s safe.
UnlikeReply11h
Julie Ali · 
Diane Corbin For some reason my response to you has been removed. I just wanted to comment that we don't have a clear idea of how much land has been fracked and damaged in Alberta. Jessica Ernst's case is troubling and for some reason government and industry wants us to believe that the fracking history is entirely pristine.
The problem with this sort of fairy tale is that it is statistically impossible; no industry is 100% accident free. I dare not post Jessica's website here as it may be taken down again as it has in the past.
Citizens should look beyond the greenwashing stories to the facts of government performance or lack thereof.
What for example are the liabilities being left by the oil and gas industry or does no one care?
LikeReply153m
Diane Corbin · 
It seems most people have bought into the fiction the politicians and the industry have created about the economy to care that o&g is one of the most destructive industries on the planet. I don’t even understand why fracking is legal.

When will the majority of the population finally realize that we can’t breathe, drink, or eat the money produced by this industry? Maybe when they’re choking on toxic air or there’s no more clean water or food left to buy? Or will they continue in their apathetic somnolence until the earthquakes caused by such extensive fracking destroy everything?

I realize I haven’t provided much in the way of details, but the impacts of this dirty, toxic, destructive industry are enormous and far reaching. As it is, people die every day from the impacts of the petroleum industry, particularly where tar sands is concerned.

Fracking will either pollute all of our drinking water or deplete it all. One way or another, we need to smarten up. There are sustainable energy technologies to support our lifestyles and boost our economy. Why are we not putting more effort into developing those? (Because petroleum is easy.)
LikeReply19m
Julie Ali · 
Diane Corbin Well I can see the reason why Albertans are so protective of the industry. They get jobs from the industry that pay for the bills of life.

Also the spin from all the political parties, government and the industry as well as media is present so how would folks know any better?

I did not question the spin until I started reading about cases of Alberta families like that of Jessica Ernst who were impacted by the industry and not one political party including the NDP have helped to provide us with this information.

I'm also curious how much water is being used by the industry for free.
That's a more important area than the oil in my opinion. Water is going to be the big problem and when will we decide this? I think we're going to decide this as the water runs out.

Synergy groups, AER spin, the puppets of the political parties all are complicit in the lack of information present about both the environmental and economic risks present.

Jessica Ernst has been sidelined by both the industry and government in my opinion; she will go bankrupt. That's the way they do it if you dare to bring up problems in the oil and gas industry.

It's all troubling. But Albertans would rather not hear about these problems, and certainly not agitate about them. But there you go.
LikeReply1m
Doug Burnett · 
Awesome. What was that other thing today? 40 million for....
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