Short-sighted energy policies

Letters to the Editor (The Guardian)
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Editor: As of late, there has been considerable discussion concerning the transport of Canadian heavy crude to the U.S. and to the Pacific. Added to the discussion is the recent sale of Canadian natural resource assets to foreign concerns.

I find both these issues very troubling, living in a country with such vast energy and technology resources yet plagued with very high energy costs at the consumer level, high taxes, declining concern for environmental quality, a federal government steeped in secrecy that refuses to listen to its own research scientists and has clearly lost touch with the electorate or simply doesn’t care.

At present, we are practically giving away our valuable, non-renewable energy resources (4 – 9 per cent of the value of a barrel of West Texas Intermediate Crude, less a $40-$50 a barrel reduction because it is Canadian “heavy crude bitumen”)

It is totally illogical not to be refining our raw products in Canada. These are the people’s resources and Canadians should obtain maximum benefits. If the refining is not done in Canada, then we lose the byproducts of the refining process that fuels our petro-chemical industries. Without these byproducts the petro-chemical industries will probably relocate to Texas and China and take with them the taxes and jobs.

At the rate of current expansion, the life span of this ‘Athabasca Delta give away’ will be 40-50 years maximum and then we will be faced with very expensive fuels for ourselves, few jobs for Canadians and no tax revenue. As it is, greater energies are used to recruit foreign workers than to educate and train Canadians.

Government mentality with respect to Canada’s petroleum energy sector is short sighted, politically selfish and based on greed with no vision for future generations!

Virtually all the advantages are going to the energy corporations, most of which are foreign-owned. It is as if our politicians were thinking about the importance of providing jobs and taxes to the people in Texas, China, Malaysia, Korea, Indonesia, etc. than for their own electorate.

Norbert Stewart,

Charlottetown

Geographic location: Canada, U.S., Texas China Malaysia Korea Indonesia Charlottetown

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