One fellow on the DailyKos has attacked the entire Alberta oil industry and Sarah Palin all in one massive shot across the bow. He condemns them both profoundly, along with the Alaska Pipeline Project. He believes that the Alberta oil industry should be shut down. Here's the executive summary of his argument:
Sarah Palin's Pipeline should be a major issue in this campaign. It is a disaster and a major scandal unfolding in real time. Here are three things that Voters should know about Sarah Palin's Pipeline deal:
- It will cost US Tax Payers Billions of dollars.
- It does not guarantee delivery of natural gas to US markets.
- It will Accelerate Climate Change and the destruction of the planet.
Let's look more closely at what he's saying:
#1 - "It will cost US Tax Payers Billions of dollars."
Yes indeed, building infrastructure costs money. The writer knows this, of course, but wants to shock people with the "B" word. The estimated cost is $26 Billion. Here's something he neglected to mention though, taken from Page 17 of the project's executive summary:
Over the first 25 years after the pipeline is up & running, the project is expected to yield the following revenue:
- $207 billion to the Alaska Shippers after taxes and royalties;
- $131 billion to the State of Alaska;
- $52 billion to the United States federal government; and
- $17 billion to TransCanada in equity return
#2 - "It does not guarantee delivery of natural gas to US markets."
This is a downright lie. The pipeline will connect into the existing Alberta natural gas pipeline infrastructure, which itself is connected to the lower 48 states in 2 places. Stating that it will not guarantee delivery to the bulk of of the U.S. States is like saying that the electricity generated in Canadian provinces is "not guaranteed" to reach the U.S.
For endless decades there has a been a massive net import of electricity from Canada by the U.S.:
The interconnection of natural gas pipelines, including this new one from Alaska work in a very similar fashion.
#3 - "It will Accelerate Climate Change and the destruction of the planet."
In this case, he has concluded that man-made Global Warming is an undeniable fact, simply parroting talking points from the Al Gore prayer book. The statement that it's undeniable is completely false. The subject is very much an unresolved issue. The DailyKos writer didn't even bother citing any references to support his unfounded claim. I guess he figures why should one bother when denying global warming is similar in nature to being a Holocaust Denier (at least in his mind).
Any reference he did want to provide can be countered with many others that absolutely dispute this unsubstantiated claim. For starters, feel free to click here and here.
As I've stated publicly before, to assume you are absolutely correct about controversial scientific issues is the height of arrogance. To think you can intelligently debate them when you don't remotely understand the science, computer models, and mathematics behind them is the height of ignorance.
Should this fellow get his wish, let's look at the repercussions of what such a decision would actually mean:
- Hundreds of thousands of families throughout Alberta would no longer have any income.
- The economy of Alberta would instantly go into a massive depression.
- The economy of Canada would be dramatically hurt, certainly hurting millions of families beyond just those who work directly in the oil industry.
- The price of gasoline would skyrocket all across North America. Some facts: In 2006, the province of Alberta exported 1.08 million barrels per day of crude oil to the United States, which accounted for 13 percent of U.S. crude oil imports. Alberta also supplied the U.S. with 62 percent of its natural gas imports.
- The cost for people to heat their homes would also skyrocket.
- The U.S. would then have to depend even more on nations that are openly hostile toward it.