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magazine / jun13

June 2013 issue

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It's obvious to anyone who has taken time to research the subject for the past two years that you ae repeating the hype from the oil and gas companies.

I did not see any mention of peak oil defined as the moment when we can extract the maximum amount of oil from the planet. Beyond that point the amount will decline continuously until it becomes uneconomic to extract.

Nor does it seem that you have heard of energy return on energy invested known as EROI or more accurately EROEI.

To fully understand this concept you need to understand that the economhy depends crucially on energy to function. As it takes a certain amount of energy to extract further energy. It is only the amount left over that allows the rest of the economy to function. When the amount of energy which can be extracted is equal to or less than the amount needed to produce it there is little point in doing so.

When oil was first discovered it had an estimated EROEI of 100:1. Since then the EROEI of energy production in the U.S. has declined to an estimated 3:1 as the best oilfields became depleted and oil companies had to drill deeper or in offshore areas. There is no reason to believe that the same situation applies elsewhere.

The Canadian tar sands have been estimated to have an EROEI of between 3 and 5 to 1. Oil from these sources will obviously not sustain our complex economy.

Oil and gas wells subject to fracking have been found to have depletion rates of around 40-50 percent per annum. Oil and gas companies must drill more an more wells just to maintain current production. Shell Oil has recently announced that it is abandoning its oil plays in the U.S. because of poor returns. The U.S. will not become energy independent because of fracking.

If you are at all interested in learning about the true energy situation I can recommend three books: The crash course by Chris Martenson and two books titled the End of Growth written independently by Jeff Rubin former chief economist at CIBC World Markets and by Richard Heinberg. All three books are available through Amazon and Chapters and perhaps even through your local library.

I can easily provide other references if asked.

Please. please stop misleading the public.


Submitted by Allan on Sunday, October 27, 2013

CanGEA is Canada’s geothermal energy industry association. We greatly
appreciate that geothermal energy was included in your recent article titled The
13+ Things you Didn’t Know About Energy in Canada. We would like to take this
opportunity to respond to some of the information mentioned about geothermal

We noticed that the definition of geothermal energy for power and heat
production is confused with geothermal heat pumps. The article “fact” mentions
that there have been 15,000 installations of geothermal heat pumps in the past
year after it states that Canada is not currently using geothermal energy, which
confuses the meaning of the two very different technologies. Geothermal heat
pumps are used in residential and commercial buildings as an energy efficiency
technology, whereas geothermal energy (or power) involves drilling hundreds or
thousands of metres to the geothermal resource to extract heat for large-scale
electricity production and direct heat uses. Our government and public must be
aware of this distinction or we squander an opportunity to utilize our geothermal
resources for clean power and heat production in the future.

In the article, Mory Ghomshei mentions the high costs of heat drawn from deep
holes in the ground for power production and direct use of geothermal heat.
Though there are high initial costs of geothermal power projects, CanGEA’s
research demonstrates that geothermal actually produces power at one of the
least expensive rates of all power sources after its initial phase of development.

Lastly, while there is zero MW of geothermal power in production in Canada today,
deep geothermal resources are still being utilized for thousands of MWth of direct
use heat projects. One needs to look no further than the popular hot springs of
British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, the Yukon, and the Northwest
Territories to see examples of the industry. Furthermore, a geopower
demonstration project has run in British Columbia in the past, and another pilot
project is in its planning phases for southern Saskatchewan (see

CanGEA is actively trying to change the state of Canada’s stagnant geothermal
industry. We are currently leading a project titled Geothermal Technology
Roadmap and Implementation Plan (TRM&IP), which will outline the prospects of
geothermal energy across the country. In order to influence government policy
and have geothermal energy on the same level playing field as conventional
energy sources, CanGEA will be looking for public supporters for their upcoming

Those interested in participating, sponsoring, or funding the upcoming campaign
or projects should contact and cite Technology Roadmap in the
subject line.

Best regards,

Julia Simone
Researcher, Canadian Geothermal Energy Association

Submitted by CanGEA on Wednesday, October 9, 2013

1a) Horizontal hydraulic fracturing aka "fracking" started in 2006 and allows a 6-acre drilling pad to extract oil & gas products from beneath 1,000 acres. The average fracked well uses 19 million litres of water and there are a dozen wells at each pad. The water becomes highly toxic and is taken out of the hydrological cycle. There are plans for hundreds of thousands of wells across North America. The government & the oil companies don't tell Canadians the entire story. Big companies get huge energy subsidies. Alberta has had an average of 2 crude oil spills per day for the past 37 years. Natural gas is replacing coal for energy production, and the environmental cost of fracking is high. The decisions we make today, our children and grandchildren live with tomorrow.

Submitted by on Saturday, August 24, 2013

A massive waste water spill from a pipeline in northern Alberta will kill plants and trees, says an Alberta ecologist.

Suzanne Bayley, a professor emeritus with the University of Alberta who specializes in wetlands ecology, says the salt in the water will kill vegetation.

"It's going to be a big dead-looking area for quite a while, I mean certainly through this year and next," she said.

Waste water extracted during oil and natural gas operations contains oil, gas, salt and other minerals.

A pipeline operated by a Texas-based oil company leaked 9.5 million litres of industrial waste water about 20 kilometres northeast of Zama City, a community near the Northwest Territories boundary.

Bob Curran, a spokesperson for Alberta’s Energy Resources Conservation Board, said the spill was first reported by Apache Canada Limited on June 1.

“At this point it's not known how long the pipeline was leaking,” he said.

“In the initial stages it was known there was some produced water into muskeg, no idea of what the volumes were but there was no indication the volumes were anywhere near the volumes eventually reported to us.”

... see or any newspaper for the rest of the real story on energy IQ in Canada

Submitted by oil spill in alberta on Friday, June 14, 2013

Great article on the energy produtciton in Canada. there are some accuracy issues with the Northern part of the map nicely included. there is no natural gas North of 60. Propane, which comes from oil, but no natural gas. speaking from the Yukon we have hyrdo a trace of wind and we burn diesel.

Submitted by Patrick Roach on Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Canadian Geographic responseThanks Patrick. We really appreciate hearing reader feedback.

There are a couple of potential reasons some energy sources don't appear on the map.

One, this map focused on primary energy production, and the scale of some primary sources means that even if there is some trace amounts of others, their relative percentage was so small as to be virtually non-existent on the scale we were using. I suspect that's the case with the Yukon.

Two, in order to create some level of consistency across the nation, we chose to exclude power/energy sources that generate, again relatively speaking, small amounts of power/energy. There were many such smaller facilities in Canada's North excluded. This was necessary to ensure a degree of clarity in the southern part of the country, as including the many smaller facilities here would have further complicated an already very busy picture. This exception was indicated in the maps legend.

Thanks again for sharing your thoughts!

Response by Aaron Kylie, senior editor on Tuesday, June 4, 2013

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