Northwest Voices | Letters to the Editor
Canada recruits U.S. skilled workers for booming oil-sands production
Detrimental effects overlooked
Wow, does Ricardo Lopez work for the oil industry? In “Need a job? Look north, Canada says,” [Business, Nov. 25] he goes on and on about how much money a person can make working to extract the tar-sands oil in Canada.
Not a word as to why Canadian workers are choosing not to go there and not a word about the detrimental effects on the environment that the tar sands are causing, such as higher rates of cancer in humans from toxic water leaking out from the holding ponds; fish abnormalities in the river; massive areas being obliterated — no longer home for animals or people; massive air pollution; land owners in Texas and Oklahoma and elsewhere forced to sell their land or get it condemned so a pipeline to carry this atrocious fuel can be constructed.
And of course, not to mention the fact that Native American lands are not even ours to build on.
— Lisa Marcus, Seattle
Oil production is too costly
Increasing oil production is far too costly for our climate.
I hope that readers made note of Jon Talton’s commentary in “Don’t gush over prospect of U.S. as world’s oil king” [Business, Nov. 25]. Talton notes that we should not celebrate North America’s growing role in oil production, since extracting and burning more and harder-to-get fossil fuels will be unimaginably costly to our global climate.
Superstorm Sandy, droughts and wildfires are forcing us to confront the reality that our planet’s climate is changing, rapidly and irrevocably. Modifying individual behaviors and trying to get meaningful laws through our gridlocked Congress is not working fast enough. If fossil-fuel companies burn the fuel they already have the rights to, we will change the planet’s climate well beyond our ability to recover.
We must reduce our fossil-fuel consumption and bolster our resilience for hard times ahead. And we must divest our universities, religious institutions, pension funds and personal portfolios of fossil-fuel investments. We cannot support an industry that is burning our future.
As with the oil-sands jobs available in Canada, we must look past short-term gain to reach a future that holds any kind of hope for our children.
— Polly Freeman, Seattle