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Tar Sands: Dirty Oil and the Future of a Continent Unknown Binding – Jan 1 2008


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Product Details

  • Unknown Binding
  • Publisher: Greystone (2008)
  • ASIN: B003W5ZJBU
  • Average Customer Review: 3.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)

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3.2 out of 5 stars
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Mel Mackinnon on April 21 2013
Format: Paperback
This book is a load of hooey. I suppose if you think any development is bad and you would rather buy oil from countries that are either corrupt or gross violaters of both human rights and the environment then you will love this book. If on the other hand you see the Oil Sands project ( it is oil sand, not tar} as a reasonable long term solution to solving our oil needs and you agree that it is run as cleanly as possible you will see this book as another attempt to cash in on the misinformation about a project that is vital to Canada's economy. Can I give it no stars?
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Bill on Feb. 7 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Hi,
Very informative. Must read for how Ralphie is ruining the climate and environment without any gain for Alberta's economy and future. Just more big bucks for big oil and no reclamtion of NE Alberta!
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Lance Read on Jan. 26 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Disturbing, alarming, annoying, depressing, discouraging, dismaying, distressing, foreboding, frightening, gloomy, ominous, perplexing, perturbing, prophetic, provoking, unpleasant, unsettling, upsetting, vexing AND so horribly accurate.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Michael H English on Jan. 15 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Should be read by all Canadian school children and especially by all Canadian politicians. Its coverage of the issues and inconceivable mismanagement surrounding the Canadian tar sands is excellent.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Oksana Richards on Dec 18 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is a must-read for all Canadians. Andrew Nikiforuk shows how Canada is doing more than its share in contributing to climate change in the world. If you care about your grandchildren and the kind of world present policies will be subjecting them to, you must read this book.
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52 of 78 people found the following review helpful By David Lewis on Nov. 25 2008
Format: Paperback
The tar sands is an important topic. But this book isn't the place to learn about it. You'd have to double check everything so you might as well go other sources and ignore this.

I study climate change and wanted to know more about the tar sands as it is a significant deposit of fossil fuel. But in one section of this book Nikiforuk writes on carbon capture, a topic I know something about. I realized how poorly researched this entire book might well be.

Nikiforuk, on carbon dioxide: "many tar sand projects puff out nearly a million tons of carbon dioxide a year.... ... a million tons - a megaton - is enough lethal carbon dioxide to fill one million two-storey, three-bedroom homes and suffocate every occupant".

If this type of overblowing is your cup of tea you'll love this book. If someone stacked up a megaton's worth of copies of Nikiforuk's book and toppled them on a three-bedroom home, no doubt these lethal books would suffocate or at least crush everyone inside as well.

When it comes to inaccuracy, he comes up with wild figures and contradicts himself on CO2 within a few paragraphs. He states, citing no source: "no infrastructure currently exists to bury carbon. To inject twenty megatons... will cost anywhere from $10 billion to $16 billion". This works out to $500 - $800 a ton. Then he points to a supposed source, as if to confirm this ballpark figure: "the Task Force on Carbon Capture and Storage... requested $2 billion in public funds to explore how to effectively bury just five megatons" which works out to $400 a ton.

No one else in the world is publishing figures like this.

Then, a few paragraphs later, Nikiforuk brings up an authority, the I.P.C.C.
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7 of 11 people found the following review helpful By R. Johnstone on March 20 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
To provide some background on my opinion on this book: I currently study natural resource conservation and am committed to stopping climate change through a reduction of greenhouse gasses including CO2. That being said, I also spent 8 months working for Syncrude in their environmental research department and living in Fort McMurray. I bought this book along with 2 others (both are in the suggested panel on this page and I speak of them below) to try to gain a bit more perspective on the industry as a whole and to get some information I was not exposed to.

I honestly don't think there was a single chapter in Nikifourk's book which didn't utterly dumbfound me. Not only does he trivialize important and peer reviewed studies such as those by David Schindler and Erin Kelly (giving them a paragraph in certain sections) but he blows certain ones (such as John O'Conners misdiagnosis) way out of proportion.

What really riles me is how he portrays the city of Fort McMurray. While it is not the place for me and not somewhere I have any intention of moving to, I met dozens of people who loved it there. The bars there are just as trashy as any one I have been to in Vancouver, the traffic is horrible (but only in the morning and evening, Monday - Thursday), but that is due to some serious municipal/provincial bickering, the city itself just feels like a town which exploded. It certainly has problems, and I feel for mayor Blake who is doing her best to make it a great city but the way Nikifourk portrayed it, you would think it is like living in a slum. I'm not sure what to say other than that is simply not the case. At all.
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2 of 4 people found the following review helpful By SCOTTY on Feb. 1 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
For those of us that work in the oilsands...yes its correctly called oilsands...it hasnt been called tarsands since 1951, and that starts off the gross inaccuracies in this book of pure propaganda not science.
The oilsands has been in operation for almost 50 years and has provided Canada with billions of dollars of revenue plus over 230,000 jobs from BC to Quebec and the Maritimes. Its a healthy sports town that grew now to over 120,000 people of many ethnic groups and religions. It has one of Alberttas oldest MOSQUES.
Nikiforuks book is crass propaganda and its easy to prove its propaganda by taking a trip to Fort McMurray and seeing the Community. My kids were born here.
Its a multicultural town. Oilsands are the biggest employer of aboriginal people in Canada and two at least are millionaires.
On the environment, oilsands contributes 0.2% of world GHGs.
A variety of studies confirms there are contaminants but all are within normal urban levels (Science Academy) Cross Cancer Institute states that comments told by Nikiforuk are untrue. There are no excessive cancers here as he states. Over 180,000 people live and work in this region MANY IN THE PLANTS EXTRACTING OIL. Do you think if there was cancer many workers would have it? Its all BS and Albertans know it. Nikiforuk has NEVER spent a day in the oilsands yet he's an expert?
Fort McMurray is a great place to raise kids. 1400 kids in minor hockey. 1800 kids in soccer. Biggest Leisure Centre in Canada with pools. Aboriginal Owned Hotel biggest in Fort McMurray (Sawridge) Biggest United Way in Canada. Home to Hockey and Film Stars (Chris Phillips and Natasha Henstridge) Home to best senior Marathon Runner in Canada (Phil Meagher) Biggest Urban Municipality in Canada.
Dave Tuccaro of TUCs Corpn.
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