People are cleaning up the biggest oil spill ever tackled – a mess Ma Nature made without any assistance from us, by the way – and what do you get? Nothing but complaints….
Through the blur of the Cessna’s propeller I can see a vast forest stretching to the horizon – two million square miles at the top of the northern hemisphere that’s home to 140, 000 species of plants, wildlife, insects and micro-organisms.
The Canadian forest in Alberta is second only to the Amazon in size. It’s critical in absorbing the Earth’s mounting deposits of carbon dioxide and carbon. Over 500 Indian tribes have lived and hunted here for thousands of years.
Suddenly a smell of sulphur begins to infuse the cockpit. Abruptly, the trees stop – where once stood towering spruce and conifer are now lifeless sand dunes. Then the landscape turns a sickly black, like a giant, dark bruise spreading over the planet.
This is ‘Tarmageddon’ – the devastation wreaked by the search for tar sand – and here, deep below the forest floor, is the third-largest oil field in the world: 173 billion barrels of recoverable oil.