Home | About | Donate

Western Canada Oil Spill Drenches Birds, Taints Drinking Water for Months to Come


Western Canada Oil Spill Drenches Birds, Taints Drinking Water for Months to Come

Nika Knight, staff writer

Despite a devastating pipeline leak that flooded the North Saskatchewan River with 200,000 liters of tar sands crude last Thursday, Husky Energy waited until Monday to shut down the leaking pipeline. An executive with the oil behemoth said the company was "deeply sorry" for the incident while announcing the pipeline closure.


Oil spill containment = oxymoron


So they knew a leak occurred but waited until several days later to shut down the pipeline?

This is about 1200 BBL of oil. I would guess this line pumps about 50000 BBL per day meaning a loss of .024 percent of oil shipped. The profits made from selling 50000 BBL minus 1200BBL are much greater than shutting down the pipeline entirely.

Was this decision purely a business decision wanting to squeeze out more days of that oil flow before the people caught on to the spill? There will probably be a small fine and it will be business as usual when those responsible should be going to jail.

The image of that Heron angers me to tears.

Profits is a dirty word. Fuck capitalism.


“Deeply sorry” doesn’t cut, sh*theel.
What he really means is that they’re deeply sorry that they “lost” the oil.
I pay close attention to the industry (hearings, etc.), and they are relentless and guiltless in their predation.


The fascist rhetoric continues - world class spill management cannot even deal with a modest spill in a medium size river. Now many thousands have their lives and drinking water impacted. Why hasn’t Husky Energy already provided a massive fleet of water tanker trucks 24/7? Oil companies do not meet their social responsibilities and governments are in bed with them.
World class spill management doesn’t take 3-4 days to shut the pipeline down, but we are assured daily about the automatic shutoff valves that will ensure our safety.
World class regulation doesn’t create laws that allow dirty energy companies to delay/avoid damage payments and overwhelm government legal departments with a lawyer for every barrel of oil.
And beyond the rhetoric of pipelines being safer than rail, we have plenty of evidence just how dangerous pipelines can be.
The safest resolution of our dirty energy needs is to significantly reduce our use of these products through national efficiency and the transitioning of our economy away from dependence upon an energy source that is poisonous, polluting and ultimately antidemocratic. Accompanying this, there must be much heavier fines and punishments including serious jail time for irresponsible, deceptive management and regulators.
Watch carefully and see if the public can find out how much of the damages are covered by Husky Energy and why the regulator didn’t know this pipeline was unsafe. How much will this cost taxpayers, workers and families? Which negligent individuals will receive consequences commensurate with destroying the water supply for a city for months?
Meanwhile there is a serious water crisis caused by dirty energy while it rails against regulation and true democracy.


“Spill Management” means manage to keep the pipeline flowing while they manage the PR control with all manner of lies and then mea culpas. The tar sands extraction across Canada will be the undoing of that beautiful nation full of unrivaled natural places. Steven Harper should be shackled, tied to a mule-drawn cart and marched across Canada to feel and suffer the anger and outrage of all human beings, especially the First Nations people enduring the most irreversible harm (and all life) from coast to coast. It was under his watch that the TS operations exploded. Will Trudeau do any better? Is there hope?


My immediate reaction too. This is another reason to rethink the value of “civilization”. I hope that majestic Blue Heron makes it and we collectively come to our senses and start pushing for de-growth.