Smokestacks release Emissions from Tar sands processing Source of image:http://wc-zope.emergence.com:8080/WildernessCommittee_Org/campaigns/wildlands/boreal/alberta/reports/Vol27No04
Dr. David Schindler, and two colleagues, in a letter to the Edmonton Journal (published on Friday, February 18th,2011) titled "Potent toxins need to be studied", has made it abundantly clear that the ruling Progressive Party of Alberta and its leader, Premier Stelmach, could care less about the health of Albertans. I say this because in this letter these authors of the letter state,
"For years, Alberta politicians and the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers have been telling Canadians that their "world-class" monitoring program on the Athabasca River showed that all pollutants were from natural sources. It was therefore assumed that additional studies of the health of people living near or downstream of the oilsands were not needed."
"This claim seemed incredible to our group of scientists, some of us with decades of monitoring experience."
"Studies on three continents have shown that the burning of fossil fuels and the smelting of ores discharge many toxins to the atmosphere. These fall back to Earth at varying distances from their high-temperature sources, usually in a radius of tens to hundreds of kilometres."
"Even before our study, the oilsands industry was reporting to Environment Canada's National Pollutant Release Inventory that it was emitting a variety of potent toxins to the atmosphere, several at rates of tens to hundreds of kilograms per year."
"The inventory also showed that emissions of many toxins have increased three-to five-fold in the past few years, due to rapid expansion of the oilsands industry."
Mr. Stelmach, by denying the conclusions of these studies you are placing the health of all Albertans in danger. The people of this province want to know why you refuse to believe these scientists whose only interest is to describe what is really occurring in this Province? Mr. Stelmach, I do not have to be a scientist to tell you that I have noticed a difference in the quality of air in Edmonton in the past few years, and I have heard other people tell me the same thing concerning this aspect of the environment we live in. Quite simply, myself and others now have trouble breathing the air in Edmonton and elsewhere in the province when we are both inside and outside. Mr. Stelmach why did you allow the Oilsands industry to expand in this fashion,without first requiring this industy to be subject to an examination by experts so that the health of the People of this province would not be adversely affected by this expansion? By allowing the Oil Sands to expand it shows that you are only interested in Big Oil and their profit margin rather than the health and welfare of the citizens of this province!
As stated by Dr. Shindler and his two collegues in this letter, "It is clear from our studies and several panel reports that monitoring,oversight,scientific review,and public reporting of the environmental effects are substantial."
Mr. Stelmach the people of the Province of Alberta want to know what you and your Government intend to do about the findings of these scientists? The health of the citizens of this province have already been affected by your lack of action on this issue,we deserve to know what steps your Government are going to take to require the Oil Industry to reduce their output of toxins to safe levels. The health of the residents of this province is at stake!