Quantcast
Environmental News for a Healthier Planet and Life

Bill Nye Depressed by Tar Sands' 'Extraordinary Exploitation’ of Environment

Energy

Bill Nye recently took a trip north to the Alberta tar sands while filming his new science documentary and he did not mince words about the state of Canada's crude oil reservoir.

“Producing all this oil that’s producing all this carbon dioxide, that’s not good from a global stand point,” the children's television icon told the Aboriginal Peoples Television Network (or APTN, a Canadian television network).

"From an environmental point of view locally, it's astonishing and overwhelming," he said.

After taking an aerial tour, Nye added that the sight of the oil sands was "depressive."

The Alberta tar sands is one of the largest bitumen (extremely heavy crude oil) reserves in the world, as well as one of the largest source sites of carbon pollution on the planet. (In case you didn't know, the proposed Keystone XL pipeline would transport this toxic muck right through the U.S., from Alberta to refineries in Texas.)

During his trip Nye visited Fort McKay First Nation, a community that's been choked by the damaging effects of the mining operations.

"The Science Guy" told APTN he was "amazed" by the size of the tar sands production and commented on its wreckage to surrounding ecosystems.

“Furthermore, consider all the toxins that are being used to move the fluid around and then they put in these enormous ponds, or lakes, or encampments,” Nye said. “It’s very much out of nature’s natural state.”

He added, “I think anybody would say that First Nations have rights that have been abridged or catastrophically curtailed.”

Nye told the network about how the upcoming Canadian federal election and the possible ousting of Canadian Prime Minster Stephen Harper could spell hope for the environment. “Everybody is talking about the very strong possibility” that the Harper government will be voted out, Nye said.

“Everybody says they feel like the tipping point’s been reached," he continued. "Everyone we speak with, where enough is enough kind of thing. But then you have people that are in denial of climate change, who justify all of this extraordinary exploitation to the environment. It’s amazing the scale of it, is just very hard to believe and very troubling.”

Nye has spoken out about the tar sands and the Canadian Conservative Leader before. "The government in Canada is currently being influenced by the fossil-fuel industry," he told VICE last year. "Stephen Harper is a controversial guy in the science community because [of] the policies, especially in Western Canada."

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

4 Arrested Blockading the U.S. First Tarsands Mine in Utah

Last Rush for the Wild West: Tar Sands Mining in Utah

5 Years Since Massive Tar Sands Oil Spill, Kalamazoo River Still Not Clean

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

Yellowstone National Park closed to visitors on March 24, 2020 because of the Covid-19 virus threat. William Campbell-Corbis via Getty Images

When the novel coronavirus started to sweep across the country, the National Park Service started to waive entrance fees. The idea was that as we started to practice social distancing, Americans should have unfettered access to the outdoors. Then the parking lots and the visitor centers started to fill up, worrying park employees.

Read More Show Less
Mike Pence and Donald Trump hold a press conference about the coronavirus outbreak in the press briefing room at the White House on March 23, 2020 in Washington, DC. Drew Angerer / Getty Images

By John R. Platt

Both eyes open. Look for potential threats coming from all sides. Be prepared to change course at a moment's notice.

Read More Show Less
Sponsored
Looking across the Houston Ship Canal at the ExxonMobil Refinery, Baytown, Texas. Roy Luck, CC BY 2.0

By Nick Cunningham

A growing number of refineries around the world are either curtailing operations or shutting down entirely as the oil market collapses.

Read More Show Less
Traffic moves across the Brooklyn Bridge on Aug. 2, 2018 in New York City. Drew Angerer / Getty Images

The Trump administration is expected to unveil its final replacement of Obama-era fuel-efficiency standards for cars and light trucks Tuesday in a move likely to pump nearly a billion more tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere over the lifetime of those less-efficient vehicles.

Read More Show Less
U.S. President Donald Trump listens as Anthony Fauci, Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases speaks in the Rose Garden for the daily coronavirus briefing at the White House on March 29 in Washington, DC. Tasos Katopodis / Getty Images

By Jake Johnson

Just over a month after proclaiming that the number of coronavirus cases in the U.S. would soon "be down to close to zero," President Donald Trump said during a press briefing on the White House lawn Sunday that limiting U.S. deaths from the pandemic to between 100,000 and 200,000 people would mean his administration and the country as a whole did "a very good job."

Read More Show Less