Canadian Mining Journal

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ENVIRONMENT – Failing grade for oil sands mines

EDMONTON - In their first joint assessment of Canada's oil sands miners, the WORLD WILDLIFE FUND and PEMBINA INSTIT...



EDMONTON – In their first joint assessment of Canada’s oil sands miners, the WORLD WILDLIFE FUND and PEMBINA INSTITUTE give all 10 of Alberta’s producers failing grades. The report, “Under-Mining the Environment”, ranked 10 operating, approved and applied for oil sands mines on 20 different environmental indicators in five categories.

The oil sands industry was rated on environmental management, land impact, air pollution, water use and greenhouse gases. Surveys for seven of the 10 projects were completed voluntarily by the operators. The Muskeg River mine of ALBIAN SANDS was the highest ranked at 56% overall. It is the only operator to have voluntary targets to limit greenhouse gas emissions.

The report points out that if all oil sands producers could meet the environmental targets of the leaders in each category, CO2e emissions would drop 66%, NOx emissions would fall 80%, SO2 intensity could be reduced by 47%, and water consumption could be reduced by almost 60% annually.

(Editor’s note: Evidently, better technologies are available, but no single producer has adopted all of them.)

The full report, data tables and fact sheets are available at www.Pembina.org.


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