Home » Corroding Our Democracy: Canada Silences Scientists, Targets Environmentalists In Tar Sands Push

Corroding Our Democracy: Canada Silences Scientists, Targets Environmentalists In Tar Sands Push

Canada keen on boosting energy exports to Japan

TZEPORAH BERMAN: Its really dirty because its the oil is mixed with sand. So, in order to get that oil out, they have to use natural gas. More natural gas is used in the tar sands than all homes in Canada. Its so, they use natural gas and freshwater to actually remove the oil from the sand, and the result is that each barrel of oil from the tar sands has three to four times more emissions, more climate pollution than conventional oil. AMY GOODMAN: And explain how this pipeline would traverse Canada and the United States and where it goes, what it is for. Does the U.S. benefit from the oil going through the pipeline? TZEPORAH BERMAN: No, this is an export pipeline. What the industry wants is, they want to get this oil off the continent because theyll get a better price. And so, all of the pipelines that are currently being proposed are in order so that the industry can export the oil. So, the Keystone, for example, will go all the way from Alberta straight down through the United States and out to the Gulf, and its not for U.S. consumption.

Abe Says Japan, Canada Agree to Cooperate on Natural Gas

The importation volume of natural gas is increasing and the prices remain high, Abe said. Canada, endowed with rich energy resources including natural gas, has a very high potential in the context of energy cooperation. Japan, which relied on nuclear power for about a quarter of its energy needs before the Fukushima disaster, is without atomic power again after the nations last operating reactor shut on Sept. 15 for regular maintenance. To compensate, the nations utilities have increased purchases of traditional fossil fuels. Japan paid an average price of $15.74 per million British thermal units for liquefied natural gas in July, according to data from LNG Japan Corp. That compares with an average of about $3.64 for U.S. natural gas futures traded in New York . Japan, the worlds biggest LNG buyer, imports almost all its energy. Canada is the worlds fifth largest producer of natural gas, the countrys Natural Resources Minister Joe Oliver said this month. Largest Importer While there are many areas for increased growth in our trade and investment relationship, the one that came up most frequently is obviously energy, Harper said. We have special assets to offer there and obviously Japan is the largest single importer of energy products. Harper said the two sides have also made progress in free trade negotiations. Japan and Canada additionally agreed in principle on a treaty governing logistics support between the two countries armed forces, which will be effective anywhere in the world, Harpers office said in a press statement. Abe was scheduled to travel to New York late yesterday, where he was due to meet French President Francois Hollande. He will meet United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon later today. Exxon Mobil Corp., the worlds largest energy company by market value, asked Canada in June for permission to export 30 million metric tons of LNG a year from the nations westernmost province of British Columbia.

There are lots of areas for growth in Canadian-Japanese trade and investment ties but “one that came up most frequently is obviously energy,” Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper said. “Canada has considerable natural gas and it is the only country in the world that is a stable market-oriented producer of energy whose energy industry is also growing,” he said. “And Japan is the largest importer of energy in the world.” Harper spoke at a joint press conference with his Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe, who was in Ottawa at the start of a five-day trip to North America. Japan’s national broadcaster earlier said Tokyo would consider giving assistance in the construction of pipelines and infrastructure to encourage the early export of liquefied natural gas (LNG) to Japan. Those exports are likely to start around 2020, according to Kyodo News, while the Nikkei newspaper said they might begin in late 2018. Japan, the world’s third largest economy, is the world’s biggest LNG consumer. But it pays a higher price for LNG than that charged in Europe and North America because Asian contracts are often long-term and linked to oil prices. The trend has remained despite increasing global production of LNG, particularly in light of the US shale gas revolution, Japanese officials have said. Hefty prices for LNG have hit Japanese utilities, which are now entirely without working atomic reactors because of a public backlash in the aftermath of the 2011 disaster at the Fukushima nuclear plant. LNG-powered thermal plants used to provide about a third of Japan’s electricity before the tsunami-sparked crisis. They now account for about a half.