tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:/xml/tar%20sands1 tar sands news from mongabay.com 2015-02-20T15:10:29Z tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14363 2015-02-09T17:26:00Z 2015-02-20T15:10:29Z Norway sovereign fund drops coal, tar sands, gold-mining companies In its first-ever report on responsible investing, Norway's pension fund announced last week that it has divested from 114 companies in the past three years due to concerns over global warming, deforestation, and sustainability as well as long-term financial viability. Worth a staggering $861 billion, Norway's Government Pension Fund Global (GPFG) is the world's largest sovereign wealth fund. Jeremy Hance 59.912277 10.764517 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13808 2014-09-19T22:13:00Z 2014-11-06T17:52:16Z Changing climate, changing conservation paradigms in Canada's boreal forests <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0919smoke150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Crackling heat and thick billowing smoke raced across the landscape. After weeks of scorching dry summer weather, the wildfire seemed to hungrily consume the earth. In northern Alberta, Canada, the Richardson fire of 2011 gained particular notoriety for ravaging nearly 700,000 hectares – and threatening the Athabasca oil sand development. Yet it is these very wildfires that are so crucial in shaping our boreal forests – which make up nearly one third of the world's forests. Brittany Stewart 57.884529 -111.033318 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13730 2014-08-29T18:51:00Z 2014-11-06T17:48:52Z More trouble with tar sands: oil extraction leading to big forest loss in Alberta <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0829-tar-sands-op-thumb.jpeg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Tar sands operations have been the subject of much controversy over the past few years as expected economic gains for Canada the may come at the cost of environmental damage from the proposed Keystone XL pipeline and increased greenhouse gas emissions. Now another negative impact has come to light - deforestation of the boreal forest overlying the oil deposits. Morgan Erickson-Davis 57.694984 -111.396673 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11696 2013-07-01T14:54:00Z 2013-07-01T14:59:22Z Activists, indigenous people plan healing walk in 'sick' tar sands landscape Hundreds of activists including Bill McKibben and Naomi Klein are going into the heart of Canada's tar sands this week – not to protest the destruction of the local environment, but to pray for the 'healing' of land and the people. Native elders from all over North America will lead people past lakes of tailings wastewater and massive infrastructure of the tar sands industry along the Athabasca River in Fort McMurray, Alberta. Jeremy Hance 57.074335 -111.638374 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11544 2013-06-04T17:51:00Z 2013-06-04T17:55:44Z Canadian province cancels tar sands pipeline due to environmental impact Efforts to expand production from the Alberta tar sands suffered a significant setback on Friday when the provincial government of British Columbia rejected a pipeline project because of environmental shortcomings. In a strongly worded statement, the government of the province said it was not satisfied with the pipeline company's oil spill response plans. Jeremy Hance 57.562995 -126.877442 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11444 2013-05-16T15:33:00Z 2013-05-16T15:39:46Z Canadian government drops over $16 million on advertising its tar sands <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/0516.nasa.Athabasca_oil_sands.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The Canadian government has nearly doubled its advertising spending to promote the Alberta tar sands in an aggressive new lobbying push ahead of Thursday's visit to New York by the prime minister, Stephen Harper. The Harper government has increased its advertising spending on the Alberta tar sands to $16.5m from $9m a year ago. Jeremy Hance 56.96145 -111.361771 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11326 2013-04-30T21:49:00Z 2013-04-30T21:54:19Z Citizen group finds 30 toxic chemicals in air following tar sands oil spill in Arkansas <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/0404.Exxon-Pipeline-Spill-Arkansas.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Independent air samples by locals have yielded "a soup of toxic chemicals" in Mayflower, Arkansas where an Exxon Mobil pipeline burst on March 29th spilling some 5,000 barrels of tar sands oil, known as bitumen. Chemicals detected included several linked to cancer, reproductive problems, and neurological impacts such as benzene and ethylbenzene. Air samples were taken by community leader and University of Central Arkansas student April Lane a day after the spill. However, the Environment Protection Agency (EPA)'s and Exxon Mobil's air samples have yielded chemical levels below harm except in the direct clean-up area, according to the Arkansas Department of Health (ADH). Jeremy Hance 34.956026 -92.427664 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11167 2013-04-04T18:10:00Z 2013-04-04T18:16:31Z Tar sands oil spill: ruptured pipe pours 200,000 gallons of oil into suburban neighborhood (photos) <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/0404.Exxon-Pipeline-Spill-Arkansas.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Last Saturday, an oil pipeline carrying tar sands oil from Canada ruptured in Mayflower, Arkansas spilling between 3,500-5,000 barrels of crude (at most 210,000 gallons) into neighborhood streets and lawns. Families from 22 homes have been evacuated while clean-up crews have scrambled to contain the spill. ExxonMobil, which runs the 65-year-old Pegasus pipeline, has stated it will pay for any damage, however critics say the oil spill is more evidence that the Obama Administration should turn down the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline. Jeremy Hance 34.956026 -92.427664 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/10885 2013-02-18T17:23:00Z 2013-02-18T17:36:21Z Over 35,000 march on Washington demanding climate action and rejection of Canada's 'carbon bomb' <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/0218.climate.8482873149_cc346db0be_c.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Yesterday over 35,000 people rallied in Washington D.C. for urgent action on climate change, which, according to organizers, was the largest climate march in U.S. history. Activists called on the Obama Administration to do much more to tackle climate change, including rejecting the Keystone XL Pipeline, which would bring carbon-heavy tar sands oil from Canada through the U.S. to a world market. Jeremy Hance 38.889455 -77.035223 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/10437 2012-11-19T21:58:00Z 2012-11-19T22:14:46Z Climate activists march on White House again to oppose Keystone XL pipeline Yesterday, climate activists marched around the White House in opposition against the Keystone XL pipeline, which if built will carry tar sands from Canada to the Gulf of Mexico and an international market. The protest, which included over 3,000 people according to organizing groups, is an opening salvo in activists' battle to convince the Obama Administration to turn down the pipeline for good. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/10372 2012-11-07T18:39:00Z 2012-11-07T18:54:34Z Day after Obama re-elected, group plans massive march over Keystone Pipeline and climate change Hours after President Obama's historic re-election, climate group 350.org announced a massive rally to apply pressure on the administration to reject the Keystone Pipeline, which would bring tar sands from Alberta to an international market. In 2011 the group and its partners carried out massive civil disobedience action, resulting in over 1,000 arrests, and a rally 12,000-strong that literally encircled the White House. The pressure, which was also brought to Obama campaign offices around the country, helped spur the Obama Administration to suspend the pipeline. Jeremy Hance 57.023168 -111.571083 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/9816 2012-07-11T20:22:00Z 2012-07-11T20:40:52Z Thousands of scientists hold mock funeral in Canada to highlight nation's "death of evidence" Carrying signs that said 'Stop Harper's War on Knowledge' and 'Scientists Shouldn't Wear a Muzzle,' Canada's scientists were unusually theatrical yesterday at a rally against the Canadian government's cuts for basic science funding and environmental protections. Scientists, dressed in white coats, carried a coffin to represent "the death of evidence" in Canada, while a costumed grim-reaper led the way. According to police, around 2,000 joined in the protest. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/9255 2012-03-15T14:30:00Z 2012-03-15T15:04:33Z Featured Video: the true cost of the tar sands What's the big deal about the tar sands? Canadian photographer Garth Lenz presents the local environmental and social concerns presented by the tar sands in a concise, impassioned speech in a TEDx talk in Victoria, Canada. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/9244 2012-03-12T18:49:00Z 2012-03-12T19:37:51Z Tar sands emit more carbon than previously estimated <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://photos.mongabay.com/j/bigstock_Oilsands_construction_20659523.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Environmentalists have targeted the oil-producing tar sands in Canada in part because its crude comes with heftier carbon emissions than conventional sources. Now, a new study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) has found an additional source of carbon that has been unaccounted for: peatlands. Mining the oil in the tar sands, dubbed "oil sands" by the industry, will require the wholesale destruction of nearly 30,000 hectares of peatlands, emitting between 11.4 and 47.3 million metric tons of additional carbon. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/9195 2012-02-29T22:36:00Z 2012-03-01T04:08:12Z TransCanada to build southern half of Keystone to avoid State Department approval <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://photos.mongabay.com/j/tarsand.ge.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Keystone XL is becoming the project that refuses to die: TransCanada, the company behind the pipeline, has said it plans to build the southern half of the pipeline while it waits to determine a new route for the northern section. The company does not need approval from the State Department, which turned down the entire pipeline in January, to build the southern half from Texas to Oklahoma. However, the Obama Administration has embraced the idea. Carrying carbon-intensive tar sands oil down from Canada to a global market, the proposed pipeline galvanized environmental and climate activists last year, resulting in several large protests and civil disobedience actions. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/9090 2012-02-13T18:49:00Z 2012-02-13T19:43:51Z Big oil makes $137 billion, gives 28 percent back to themselves The world's top five oil companies&#8212;BP, Chevron, Conoco Phillips, Exxon Mobil, and Royal Dutch Shell&#8212;made a record $137 billion in 2011 beating out the previous record in 2008, reports Climate Progress. Still even as the companies made record profits they produced 4 percent less oil than the prior year. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/9081 2012-02-08T20:45:00Z 2012-02-08T20:54:12Z Green groups: government moving too slowly on protecting Canada's Great Bear rainforest Three environmental groups have submitted a letter to British Columbia Premier, Christy Clark, to ask the government to speed up the process of implementing the Great Bear Rainforest Agreement, which is meant to ensure 70 percent of old-growth forest is maintained. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/9065 2012-02-06T21:43:00Z 2012-02-06T21:47:11Z Kelly Blynn: activists not "letting the pressure off" on Keystone pipeline <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://photos.mongabay.com/j/6104822039_e547183b95_o.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Along with Bill McKibben and a small cadre of passionate environmental activists, Kelly Blynn co-founded the climate activism group "350." 350 exemplifies the power of online networks combined with activism and has coordinated some of the largest and most successful environmental protests in history. The 350 team has organized more than 5,200 events in 181 countries around the world. Kelly graduated from Middlebury College with a degree in Geography and Environmental Studies and experience coordinating one of the largest university campus environmental activism groups in the United States. Blynn is currently situated in Washington, D.C. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/9020 2012-01-26T21:08:00Z 2012-01-26T21:09:42Z U.S. media favored Keystone pipeline in coverage A new report by Media Matters finds that U.S. TV and print media were largely biased toward the construction of TransCanada's Keystone XL Pipeline, which the Obama administration recently turned down. The report finds that guests and quotes were largely in favor of the pipeline in addition to news outlets consistently repeating job figures for the pipeline that have been discredited. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/8974 2012-01-18T21:51:00Z 2012-01-18T22:05:50Z Obama rejects Keystone pipeline, but leaves door open for tar sands <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://photos.mongabay.com/j/tarsand.ge.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The Obama administration today announced it is scrapping TransCanada's Keystone pipeline after Republicans forced a 60-day deadline on the issue in a Congressional rider. The State Department advised against the pipeline arguing that the deadline did not give the department enough time to determine if the pipeline "served the national interest." The cancellation of the pipeline is a victory for environmental and social activists who fought the project for months, but Republicans are blasting the administration. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/8838 2011-12-13T17:08:00Z 2011-12-13T17:08:22Z Harsh words for Canada after it abandons Kyoto Protocol Less than two days after signing on to a "road map" agreement at the UN Climate Summit in Durban, South Africa, Canada has announced it is formally withdrawing from the Kyoto Protocol after failing to meet its emissions pledges. Although not surprising, reaction from other nations and environmental groups was not only swift, but harsh. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/8776 2011-12-01T22:59:00Z 2011-12-01T23:13:33Z Africa, China call out Canada for climate betrayal <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://photos.mongabay.com/j/canada.symbol.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Purchasing a full page ad in the Canadian paper the Globe and Mail, a group of African leaders and NGOs is calling on Canada to return to the fold on climate change. Canada has recently all-but-confirmed that after the ongoing 17th UN Summit on Climate Change in Durban, South Africa, it will withdraw entirely from the Kyoto Treaty. The country has missed its targets by a long-shot, in part due to the exploitation of its tar sands for oil, and is increasingly viewed at climate conferences as intractable and obstructive. In the eyes of those concerned about climate change, Canada has gone from hero to villain. Yet notable African activists, including Archbishop Desmond Tutu, are pushing back. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/8675 2011-11-10T19:52:00Z 2011-11-10T19:56:54Z Obama Administration bows to pressure, delays tar sands pipeline In what can only be described as a major victory for green activists, the Obama Administration has announced it will delay a decision on TransCanada's controversial Keystone XL pipeline for 12-18 months. Notably, putting the decision off until after the last election. The delay comes less than a week after about 12,000 people encircled the White House in opposition to the Keystone XL pipeline, which they argue threatens one of the most important water supplies in America's heartland and will worsen climate change. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/8648 2011-11-07T18:17:00Z 2011-11-07T22:31:17Z 12,000 surround White House to protest tar sands pipeline <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://photos.mongabay.com/j/tarsands.encircle.kid.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>One year to the day before the 2012 US election, up to 12,000 activists encircled the White House to protest the Keystone XL pipeline, a proposed 1,700 mile pipeline that would carry oil from Canada's infamous tar sands to the US and other foreign markets. Critics of the TransCanada pipeline have warned of potential spills in America's heartland as well as the climate impacts of allowing more tar sands oil, which has a higher carbon footprint than conventional sources, into the US and other markets. The issue has galvanized climate and environmental activists in the US with the massive rally on Sunday preceded by civil disobedience actions in late summer that lead to the arrests of 1,253 people. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/8539 2011-10-11T15:33:00Z 2011-10-11T16:32:44Z Tar sands pipeline 'another dirty needle feeding America's fossil fuel addiction' <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://photos.mongabay.com/j/tarsand.ge.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Climate and environmental activism in the US received a shot of enthusiasm this summer when it focused unwaveringly on the Keystone XL Pipeline. During a two week protest in front of the White House, 1,253 activists&#8212;from young students to elder scientists, from religious leaders to indigenous people&#8212;embraced civil disobedience for their cause and got themselves arrested. Jamie Henn, spokesperson with Tar Sands Action, which organized the protests, and co-founder of climate organization 350.org, told mongabay.com that,"the reason the Keystone XL pipeline has emerged as such a key fight is because it is on a specific time horizon, the Administration says it will issue a decision by the end of this year, and the decision whether or not to grant the permit rests solely on President Obama's desk. This is a clear test for the President." Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/8531 2011-10-10T17:13:00Z 2011-10-12T21:47:24Z Keystone pipeline company hand-picked US government's environmental assessor A little over a month after 1,252 people were arrested in two weeks of civil action against the Keystone XL Pipeline, The New York Times has revealed that the Obama administration allowed a consulting firm with financial ties to the pipeline to conduct the project's Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA). While it is not uncommon for government departments to 'outsource' EIAs, legal experts quoted in the piece expressed surprise that the State Department would select a firm so close to the company proposing the project. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/8459 2011-09-27T22:25:00Z 2011-09-27T22:29:22Z Over 100 arrested as tar sands civil disobedience spreads to Canada After two weeks of sustained protesting at the US White House against the Keystone XL pipeline, with 1,252 people arrested, civil disobedience has now spread to Canada, home of the tar sands. Yesterday, around 500 people protested in Ottawa against Canada's controversial tar sands; 117 were arrested as they purposefully crossed a barrier separating them from the House of Commons in an act of civil disobedience. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/8366 2011-09-06T14:42:00Z 2011-09-06T15:11:02Z Climate test for Obama: 1,252 people arrested over notorious oil pipeline <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://photos.mongabay.com/j/tarsands.protest.1.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Two weeks of climate disobedience at the White House ended over the weekend with 1,252 people arrested in total. Activists were protesting the controversial Keystone XL pipeline in an effort to pressure US President Barack Obama to turn down the project. If built the pipeline would bring oil from Alberta's tar sands through six US states down to Texas refineries. While protestors fear pollution from potential spills, especially in the Ogallala Aquifer which supplies water to millions, the major fight behind the pipeline is climate change: Canada's tar sands emit significantly more carbon than conventional sources of oil. Jeremy Hance