Your email address will not be published. https://www.nationalgeographic.co.uk/environment/2019/04/worlds-most-destructive-oil-operation-and-its-growing Published April 15, 2019. (2011, November 9). Land Smith, Carol. Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com. Over the past decade, rotational workers have grown in number in the Athabasca Oil Sands Area (AOSA) due to industry’s major expansion in the early to mid-2000s. This oil sand location is the world’s third largest oil reserve,5 holding around 10 percent of the global oil reserve.2 Deposits here cover an area of roughly 140,000 square kilometers – larger than England.5 But, to extract the bitumen, huge tracts of forested land have been strip-mined, with enormous environmental repercussions.4 The land is first drained of any water and then bulldozers remove trees, peat moss and soil to expose the sandy deposit.4 Subsequently, the process destroys or displaces all wildlife in the area and leaves toxic tailing ponds behind.2, In addition, as per the Paris Agreement, Canada is committed to reducing its carbon emissions. https://www.oilsandsmagazine.com/technical/oilsands-101 Accessed July 20, 2020. Location of Alberta’s oil sands, with outline on surface of Athabasca block showing extent of Athabasca Wabiskaw-McMurray deposit. 200,000 tonnes of water used daily to treat bitumen – polluting local groundwater supplies. Where oil sands are close to the surface, they are extracted in large open pit mines. The mining and extraction process releases sulfur oxides, nitrogen oxides, hydrocarbons, and fine particulate matter into the atmosphere. Human Presence, NASA Goddard Space Oil sands that are buried more than 80 meters below the land surface are retrieved through in situ wells. Mutations, tumors and deformed fish species have begun to appear due to the accumulation of toxins in the river. It is an energy-intensive process that until recently cost too much to be profitable. How Things Work: Canada’s Oil Sands. (2011, November 10). Government of Alberta. Year-by-year images are available in the Earth Observatory’s World of Change series. What Are Tar Sands? Oil sands processing is undoubtedly an environmentally damaging method of extracting oil.10 Indeed, extraction has a catastrophic effect on nearby flora and fauna and it produces high levels of CO2.11 With so many associated harmful impacts on local ecology, air and water, it is unsurprising that environmentalists are campaigning against expanding oil sands processing in Canada. Stenhouse, Kailyn, Hanania, Jordan, Sheardown, Ashley, Donev, Jason. Investopedia. Oil sands facts and statistics. We aim to provide as much knowledge and education to the public about oil and tar sands, including how they work and their effects on the environment and climate change. The oil sands consist of a mixture of crude bitumen, silica, clay and water. Oil Sands. As the images show, forest must be cleared for both in situ and surface mining. ( Log Out /  ( Log Out /  2 Deposits here cover an area of roughly 140,000 square kilometers – larger than England. https://www.capp.ca/oil/extraction/ Accessed July 20, 2020. Caption by Holli Riebeek. Athabasca’s in situ wells yielded 189.41 million barrels of oil in 2010. Image of the Day 6 mines produce 250,000 barrels of crude oil on a daily basis and a total of 173 billion barrels of oil estimated to be contained in the sands. Because what’s important to you is important to us. Prince, Andrew. With the rising cost of oil, mining oil sands has become a profitable endeavor in the past decade. The Athabasca Oil Sands are a stable source of oil for North America, including the United States, the world’s largest consumer of oil. It is the world’s largest oil sands deposit, with a capacity to produce 174.5 billion barrels of oil—2.5 million barrels of oil per day for 186 years. Infographic: How Tar Sands Oil Is Produced. A grid of white dots defines an in situ operation, MacKay River, west of the Mildred Lake Mine and near the left edge of the image. https://www.npr.org/2012/08/16/158907708/infographic-how-tar-sands-oil-is-produced?t=1595246798603 Published August 16, 2012. The Athabasca Oil Sands are a stable source of oil for North America, including the United States, the world’s largest consumer of oil. Perhaps nowhere is growth easier to see than at the Athabasca Oil Sands in Alberta, Canada. Required fields are marked *. To get usable oil from this mixture, producers have to separate the bitumen from the sand using hot water, and then process the bitumen into crude oil. U.S Energy Information Administration. Accessed July 20, 2020. callback: cb Accessed July 20, 2020. Updated Feb 23, 2016. Subsequently, this allow the solids to separate from the water and oil.8 However, the waste ponds are so toxic that wildlife has to be prevented from going near them.6. Athabasca Oil sands is located in northeastern Alberta, Canada. } Tailings ponds contain a number of toxins that can leak into the groundwater or the Athabasca River. Google Earth - July 23, 1984 - May 15, 2011KML. In 2009, 500 migrating ducks died due to the high oil content of the water. Oil sands are a combination of sand, clay and water that contain a heavy crude oil variant called bitumen.1 But, this complex hydrocarbon is almost solid at room temperature and does not flow without extensive processing.2 Subsequently, there are two ways to extract the bitumen: mining or in situ.3 Both are complex, energy-intensive and expensive processes.3 As a result, oil sands processing is considered the most environmentally damaging oil extraction process in use today.4 Consequently, the legitimacy of expanding it in Canada is controversial.4, In Alberta, Canada, the destructive effects of oil sands processing have been enormous. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. And that means showing you our support. Pembina. This is mainly due to: Industrialisation – Oil is a sort after primary resources as it is utilised in the manufacture of plastic, vehicles, road tar and housing insulation. April 17, 2018 April 17, 2018 by edluffy, posted in Case study, Global Interactions, Notes. Land Oil sands consist of clay, sand, and other minerals, coated in water and thick, viscous oil called bitumen (or asphalt). Oil Sands 101: Process Overview. Accessed July 20, 2020. listeners: [], View this area in EO Explorer . Acquired June 25, 2010, this natural-color image shows the oil slick in the Gulf of Mexico. Brett, Denny. Energy Education. Image of the Day })(); Your email address will not be published. Caption by Holli Riebeek. The Millennium and Steepbank Mines also developed on the east side of the river in the following decade. Oil Extraction. (2011, April 7). Accessed July 20, 2020. Higher oil prices now offset the cost, and the oil sand industry is growing. ); { Case study: Athabasca Oil Sands. Human Presence. This is the world’s most destructive oil operation—and it’s growing. Athabasca Oil Sands. Union of Concerned Scientists. Human Presence NPR. By 2011, pit mines surrounded the Athabasca River. The importance of Canada’s oil sands . Accessed July 20, 2020. Land. An overview. https://ourworld.unu.edu/en/canadas-oil-sands Published November 16, 2009. The Real GHG trend: Oilsands among the most carbon intensive crudes in North America. Only 20% of Alberta’s oil sands are recoverable through open-pit mining. Our World. Canadian Oil Sands and what you need to know about the latest project. athabasca oil corp • operations ... athabasca oil corp • hangingstone project: location map • oct 2012: regulatory filings: aer • environmental assessment: hangingstone expansion project • oct 2015 aer • hangingstone expansion: eia report & application for approval • aug 2015 athabasca oil corp • hangingstone expansion: application to ercb • may 2013 athabasca oil corp • ha

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