By Christina Fermin
Politics & Society Columnist
Tar sand is a type of sandstone from which asphalt can be made. The extracting process of tar sand is so vicious to the environment (google maps picture here), it is no wonder why its been deemed a step backward for us during these tumultuous times. Tar sand mining is a process which clears the land of all trees and brush from the area while also removing all the soil up until the tar sands, the process requires using lots of water and using more energy than conventional oil. If we are to move forward as a country and a species, we must dramatically alter our lifestyle. Most of us know this, when will the business world and politicians jump on board?
As of right now there are over 1,600 miles of a pipeline, specifically the keystone pipeline wanting to be approved to take this crude oil from Canada down to the gulf coast region. This pipeline would cross ecologically sensitive areas, effecting all sorts of wildlife and sit over the Ogallala aquifer, one of the largest fresh water reserves in the world. An aquifer that crosses 8 states and supplies more than 2 million people with fresh drinking water. Not to mention that parts of this pipeline crosses over an active seismic zone which experiences earthquakes. I see a disaster in the works here, Transcanada has already had to shut the pipeline down a few times this year because of leaks. Besides the problems with what I have mention therewill beunintended consequences, consequences that we cannot afford in this day and age.
Where Obama made it a platform during his campaign to move in the direction of renewable energy, this would be a giant step back. Big oil has fought tooth and nail to make any strides forward in terms of renewable energy, we need to meet that push back and demand that the people we elect to do our bidding, they must comply or face the fury of the people. Renewable energy would create jobs that last and boost the economies of the countries while revitalizing creativity and reviving this dying economy. Creating an economy based on renewable energy is the type of economic plan we need during this depression. The pipeline is going to create temporary jobs, and has more risks associated with it than anything else. Politicians have to show more bronze and legislate that which will benefit the people and future generations rather than the money trail that gets them into office.
The keystone pipeline has been met with strong opposition from protesters all over including the indigenous populations of the US and Canada (photo blog here). So far over 350 people have been arrested for protesting against the extension of this massive pipeline that would pump 700,000 barrels of heavy crude oil each day. As of 8/26/11 the State Department released its final assessment stating that there will be ‘no significant impact.’ Outrageous! What I see here is Big Oil over reaching their hand for monetary gain. Government is no longer in the hands of the people if they cannot begin to put fossil fuels on the back burner and bring forth the future that we want. A future that is clean, green and aesthetically beautiful. A future where the air is clean to breathe and pollution is something of the past, a place where the Earth is not used as a trash can.
Everything that is used and thrown away, there is an alternative that is better, cleaner and environmentally friendly. Because our elected “leaders” do not have the courage and balls to stand up to the giant multinational corporations that hold them, we the people must meet these corporations with courage, ferocity and justice. We must be the ones to reign in corruption and greed, the very systems that have been in place to protect us are now being used against us. I read about this and I am enraged. How many more people have to die prematurely because of pollution? How many more people have to suffer from cancer and disease because of an unintended consequence for raping and pillaging Earth as if that what she was put into this universe for? How many more catastrophes and disasters do we have to read about? How much more suffering must be endured until we realizethere isa better way! Do not sit idly by while Mother Earth dies, do not let them win. Do Something.Sign the petition and visit this site.
Peace & Love,
About the Columnist
With a bachelors degree in political science from Florida Atlantic University, Christina Fermin has always cultivated her love for history, politics, sociology, ancient knowledge and teachings, the outdoors, the ocean and the environment. Christina strives to make our world better by helping us all create a new reality and understanding of all taking place here and now.