Suncor Puts the Lie to Energy Intensity Promises

President George Bush, Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper and now the Canadian Council of Chief Executives are all suggesting that voluntary targets to reduce energy intensity will be a sufficient short-term response to climate change.

But Suncor Energy, one of the biggest players in the biggest CO2 emissions industry in Canada, has offered a stellar illustration of the idiocy of that position.

In a half-page ad in the Globe and Mail, Tuesday, Suncor boasted that it had reduced GHG emission intensity in its Alberta oil sands development by 51 per cent between 1990 and 2006. The ad failed to mention that - thanks to huge increases in production - the company's absolute emissions increased by 131 per cent over the same period. According to a PowerPoint presentation that you can find here, Suncor also plans to increase its production in the next three to five years from 260 thousand barrels per day to 550 thousand - a further jump of nearly 90 per cent.

Even at Suncor, that should be enough to unsettle your goldfish.


Well, Richard, let us know when you plan to stop using oil.

I carried a plastic bag from my car to my house yesterday and that makes it hypocritical for me to make any comment even vaguely critical of the way the oil industry operates in this country.
I guess I should go ba-a-a-a-ack to my desk with the rest of flock and ignore the wolves feeding at the edge of the field. Wouldn’t want to be taken as uppity.

It’s okay, Richard. Nobody is likely to mistake you for anything other than the hypocritical blow-hard sheep you are.

And, like most sheep, every now and again you like to get up on hind legs and bleat your recieved wisdom, and imagine yourself as some sort of “dangerous” critic of “The Man”. Ooooo, how subversive.

But do let us know when you decide to give up using oil. You never will, of course. The fact is that soft, flabby, liberal urbanites like you couldn’t last for five minutes outside the cozy confines of the Western capitalist/industrial society which tolerates your continued existence, yet which you despise so very much.

Keep bleating.

Yeah , Richard’s really sticking it to the man!

Or maybe he’s concerned about global warming and humanity’s effect on the environment.

But I’m betting on my first idea. Rock on dude!

Sure he’s all concerned and crap about the environment. I’ll bet he even purses his lips, and pensively rubs his chin. Just not concerned enough to do without his car or plastic bags. Ever.

Such scintillating wit and incisive commentary – right up there with “nyah nyah!”

You haven’t a clue what Richard or anyone else posting here is doing to cut down their personal impact. You just spout your drivel and contribute nothing to the conversation. It may interest you to know that it is possible to eliminate fossil fuel as a home heat source, buy electricity from renewable clean sources, cut gasoline consumption in half and use canvas shopping bags. I’ve done it, without moving into a cave, riding a bike in winter or giving up my mod cons. So sneer all you like. People who take this seriously manage to find ways to minimize the amount of carbon they individually belch out into the atmosphere. What are YOU doing?

The fact is that reduced intensity targets are a smokescreen and that net emissions are on the rise. Suncor et al are pulling a fast one and lulling the consumer into a false sense of security.

So shut up and stick to the point.


Well, Dot, (is that short for Dorothy?) your latest riposte has taken the argument to an intellectual level that I can no longer sustain. “Soft, flabby, liberal urbanite” that I am, I just can’t possibly respond to your devastating dismissal of my earlier point.

Oh, except that you have not, at any point, thought to address my point.

Never mind, I’m just going to Trotsky on home and hide my head under the covers, lest you insult me again. Oooooh, scary.