Oilsands giant Suncor says it's turning ugly oilsands tailings pond into swan

EDMONTON - Suncor Energy says it has taken a big step toward transforming one of its ugly duckling oilsands tailings ponds into an environmentally benign swan.

The oilsands giant is to announce next week that it is the first company in Alberta to successfully reclaim a tailings pond. The 2.2-square-kilometre area has been filled in and landscaped with 630,000 newly planted trees, bushes and shrubs.

"Pond 1 is now going to be known as Wapisiw Lookout. That is a Cree word that means swan," Suncor (TSX:SU) spokesman Dany Laferriere said Wednesday.

"This has not been done before. We have said that we could do it and this goes to show that reclaiming tailings ponds is possible and we are doing it."

Suncor says it will continue developing the site over the next 10 to 15 years into a mixed forest with wetlands that can support wildlife, including waterfowl.... Read more »

Media Advisory - Unhealthy Fish Downstream of Oil Sands

Unhealthy fish from the lower Athabasca River, Delta & Lake Athabasca, downstream of oil sands

Scientists, Doctors, Leadership, Fishers, Community Members to call on Federal Government to Establish Monitoring Program.

Press Conference Thursday Sept. 16, 10:00 a.m.

Local fishers report increasing numbers of unhealthy fish in the lower Athabasca River, Delta and Lake Athabasca.  University of Alberta researchers documented unhealthy fish during 2008 sampling.  These waterbodies are located downstream of oil sands industrial development.  Recently, two peer-reviewed publications documented industrial releases of pollutants, which are toxic at low concentrations, to the Athabasca River and its tributaries.

A letter will be released at the press conference calling on the Federal Government to establish a fish health monitoring program.... Read more »

Swimming in chlorinated pools can lead to cancer: Study

MADRID — Swimming in chlorinated pools can cause an increased risk of cancer in bathers, Spanish researchers said on Monday.

Researchers from the Barcelona-based Centre of Research in Environmental Epidemiology (CREAL) and Research Institute Hospital del Mar studied changes in indicators of mutagenicity -- permanent mutation of the DNA -- among a group of swimmers in an indoor chlorinated pool.

"The evidence of genotoxic effects were observed in 49 healthy adults after swimming for 40 minutes in a chlorinated indoor pool," CREAL said in a statement on Monday.

Researchers found indicators of an increase in cancer risk in healthy subjects as well as potential respiratory effects from the cholorine used as a disinfectant, the statement said.

... Read more »

Times Square Advertisements Redux

Tell It Like It Is

We here at the Sierra Club Prairie think that the government's use of the people of Alberta's money to advertise corporate oil business is in both poor taste and unethical. As such, we have reworked the advertisements they are playing as far as Time Square in New York to what they really should be.

They appear to like the catch phrase "Tell It Like It Is", so we will, even if they don't.

 ... Read more »

Greenpeace report challenges Canada’s need for dirty, risky fossil fuels

9 September 2010 (Toronto) — Greenpeace today released a comprehensive analysis of Canada’s energy potential that challenges the need for dirty oil from the tar sands and shows that Canada can create tens of thousands of green jobs, while providing over 90 per cent of the country’s electricity and heating needs from renewable sources by 2050.

“Greenpeace worked with energy experts to show how Canada can break its addiction to dirty tar sands oil, coal and gas and save consumers $5.3 billion a year by investing in renewable energy and energy efficiency,” said Keith Stewart, Greenpeace climate and energy campaigner. “We challenge the oil industry and governments to lay out their plan for protecting Canadians from climate change and rising costs for fossil fuels. It’s past time for this debate.”... Read more »

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