Wednesday, September 07, 2011

THE DAILY VIEW: The Tar Sands Trade-Off

I want to depart from the usual "daily view" format today to present my "visual reaction" to the "rational" argument that there is a "reasonable trade-off" that favors the building of the Keystone XL pipeline from Northern Alberta to Texas refineries in order to feed America's oil addiction while waiting for some better non-fossil fuel technology to come online. This is the position of the US State Department, of Energy Secretary Steven Chu and is now also supported by Andrew Revkin of the NY Times.

I see the "trade-off" as working more like this:

Northern Alberta Forests and Ox-Bow Lakes

Northern Alberta land after Tar Sands extraction.

Texas Wildfire
Texas burns and the nation faces Hell and High Water.

I could offer a bunch of words like "hottest summer on record" or "climate change induced extreme events" or "carbon emissions out of control" or "crisis shock" but the pictures seem (to me) to tell it better.

That's my view today.

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