Green Groups Banned From Hearings on Alberta Tar Sands
The Canadian province that is ground zero for tar sands oil extraction has prohibited a coalition of environmental organizations from participating in regulatory hearings on a controversial new oil industry development, claiming that the green groups are not directly impacted by the project.
The decision infuriated environmental campaigners who say Alberta’s regulatory system is rigged to favor an oil industry that is wreaking havoc on the environment.
“Instead of addressing concerns about unchecked tar sands development, they are excluding concerned groups that are science-based and principled,” said Carolyn Campbell, conservation specialist for the Alberta Wilderness Association, in an interview with Common Dreams.
Oilsands Environmental Coalition—comprised of several green groups—is seeking a voice in a proposed new Alberta development by Southern Pacific Resource Corporation.
The project at issue is an in situ development, which “is where bitumen is too deep to strip mine and you drill and steam it out,” according to Campbell.
In a March 27 letter, Environment Alberta official Kevin Wilkinson denied the coalition standing to participate in provincial regulatory hearings regarding the project on the grounds that the coalition is not directly impacted, according to Bob Weber writing for The Canadian Press.
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