Monday, 08 Dec, 2008 Environment

Exploitation of Oil Sands in Canada Could Kill 100 Millions of Birds


A lot of concerns have been raised over Canada's plan to continue exploiting the country's oil sands. According to a new report, the exploitation of Canada's oil sands could harm millions of migratory birds, mainly by damaging their habitat.

It is worth mentioning that the tarry deposit located in Alberta is second-biggest oil reserve in the world, being surpassed by oil deposits from Saudi Arabia. In order to separate the utilizable oil from the gunk, a lot of energy is required, practically three times as much as it is needed to pump conventional oil. Considering this fact, the Canadian oil can be dubbed "world's dirtiest."

The report, presented by the US Natural Resources Defense Council, states that in the next 50 years 100 million migratory birds may die if the exploitation of the mine continues.

The government of the United States forbade its agencies to acquire fuel made from oil sands. In addition, President-Elect Barack Obama mentioned that United States would crack down on dirty fuels, the action being part of Obama's climate-change strategy, informs NewScientist.

All the criticism around the exploitation of oil sands has already had its effect, with Alberta provincial government reducing its impact on the environment, also looking forward to invest CAN$2 billion (US$1.6 billion) to capture CO2 that is emitted as a result of exploitation of oil sands. To note that such action would've probably been considered absurd in 2007. It is possible that oil sands might be the first energy source to lose its significance in the face of new critical look of the United States on fossil fuels.

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