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E N V221 (8)

October 9.docx

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School of Environment
E N V221

October 9, 2012  Certain regions have a monopoly on oil reserves (middle east)  Oil shales and tar sands  Estimates of total oil supply usually do not reflect large potential from unconventional oil sources such as shale oil and tar sands  Could potentially double total reserve.  Poor energy return on investment (not efficient)  Severe environmental costs  Toxic sludge production Water use Keystone XL pipeline proposal  TransCanada Pipeline plan to extend pipeline to ship crude oil from Alberta to Texas  Pros: Jobs  Cons: Environmental impacts, cuts across sensitive environmental areas Northern Gateway pipeline  From Alberta to British Columbia.  Area in British Columbia has prestigious forest areas  Economically many people are very opposed because they will not get profits from pipeline  who gets revenue from pipeline? Issues with oil use (aside from climate change)  Often contains high sulfur levels  Oil spills Peak oil  Shell Oil geologist M. King Hubbert calculated that US oil production would peak around 1970  More recently scientists predict that global oil production will peak in the coming decade  While others contend that we have already passed the peak Natural Gas  Most efficient fossil fuel  Only 10% of its energy content is lost during shipping and processing  Ordinary gas-burning furnaces are about 75% efficient  High economy furnaces can be upward of 95% efficient  Difficult to ship long distances and dangerous to store in large quantities Hydroelectric power  Supplies 17% of worlds electricity and 60% of Canada’s  As water flows
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