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Broken Ground

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"Canada lacks environmental protections enjoyed by similar nations around the world. We’re at or near the bottom in many rankings of wealthy, industrialized countries, placing 24th out of 25 on environmental performance indicators in a recent survey of Organisation of Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries."  says David Suzuki,

His article about the families who moved to Alberta reveals the sudden changes to their lives when oil drilling began, and within three years found themselves and their farms and homes surrounded by more than 100 rigs - without any stakeholder engagement. 

Globally the nightmare is magnified. Michael Klare writes in Twenty-First-Century Energy Wars (which first appeared in TomDispatch and now appears on Bill Moyers' site) "Iraq, Syria, Nigeria, South Sudan, Ukraine, the East and South China Seas: wherever you look, the world is aflame with new or intensifying conflicts. At first glance, these upheavals appear to be independent events, driven by their own unique and idiosyncratic circumstances. But look more closely and they share several key characteristics — notably, a witch’s brew of ethnic, religious and national antagonisms that have been stirred to the boiling point by a fixation on energy." 

Klare points out that "control over oil and gas ... translates into geopolitical clout for some and economic vulnerability for others." 

So our hunger for power has made us pawns in the wars over non-renewable resources and we may end up like those nations breaking under brutality and injustice, siding with whichever tribe we identify with for the spoils. If we continue to believe that "jobs and the economy" means jobs for us and a better economy for us, we only have ourselves to blame. 


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