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EDITOR: Poor Justin Trudeau, shown trying his best to straddle the conflicting demands of reducing oil consumption and getting the pipeline built, as shown in the cartoon in the Jan. 11 Guardian.
It well represents the dilemma facing legislators. There are good reasons for reducing consumption of fossil fuels, and also good reasons for building pipelines. Those in opposition to pipelines might like to do a bit of thinking on the consequences of that stance. With the best will in the world, we will need oil for some time to come until alternatives are established. Many industries do not have the option of changing to a different fuel. Farming, fishing, shipping, mining and airlines do not have any option at this stage. And if we ignore the combustion of oil, we need huge quantities for the petro-chemical industry that makes all kinds of synthetic materials, including the huge fibreglass blades of the Greens' beloved wind turbines.
The only alternative to moving oil by pipelines is by rail. Their carbon footprint is huge. Even empty, they use large amounts of oil to merely move, and there is the cost of filling them, driving them up mountains, and then pumping them dry, then moving them back again empty. An accident is horrific, as we saw at Lac Megantic. Properly built pipelines are so much safer, cheaper, and with a much lower footprint.
Banning pipelines will only make the problem of emissions worse.
Pipeline protestors, do a bit of thinking!