Oil leakage in Alberta a Concern for the Industry
Unknown cause of oil leak sparks debate over oil extraction
By Viviane Fairbank, Staff Writer
The Canadian oil industry and scientists alike are unable to stop an oil leak that has been spilling into northeast Alberta for the past nine weeks.
CBC News reports that four leaks at the Primrose Lake site have affected around 13.7 hectares of land near the Cold Lake Air Weapons Range, casting doubt on the effectiveness and safety of underground extraction operations.
The extraction of oil by steam is one of the most common method of oil production in the province.
On Tuesday, the Toronto Star quoted an anonymous scientist who had been on site at the tar sands extraction operation:
“Everybody (at the company and in government) is freaking out about this,” the scientist told the Star. “…Nobody really understands how to stop it from leaking, or if they do they haven’t put the measures into place.”
Until Canadian Natural Resources Ltd. is able to find the source of the problem and solve it, wildlife and vegetation are being affected by the spill daily. The company assures the Star, however, that it is effectively managing and cleaning the spill.
Viviane Fairbank is a writer, photographer, and willing university student, desperately waiting to travel around the world. She can be found at http://vivianefairbank.weebly.com.