Quantcast
Environmental News for a Healthier Planet and Life

Tar Sands Lobby in the Driver's Seat against Europe's Fuel Quality Directive

Climate
Tar Sands Lobby in the Driver's Seat against Europe's Fuel Quality Directive

Oil Change International

By Andy Rowell

We have known for a long time that the Canadian government was colluding with the oil and gas industry over tar sands and its campaign against Europe’s Fuel Quality Directive (FQD).

But new documents have come to light that reveal the extent of that collusion, especially between Big Oil and Natural Resources Canada, the department headed by Joe Oliver, who has long been a cheerleader for the oil industry.

The emails are between senior bureaucrats at Natural Resources Canada and the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP) which calls itself the “voice” of the upstream oil industry in the country, whose members include BP and Shell.

The emails expose the fact that CAPP’s lobbyists essentially approved Canada’s bully boy tactics against the EU, which last week led to yet further delay in the implementation of the landmark climate change legislation.

Mark Corey, an assistant deputy minister at Natural Resources Canada, wrote an internal last October. It read: “I talked to (CAPP president) David Collyer about the possible Canadian position on the FQD that we discussed—everyone in same basket, at same level, until they prove otherwise.” Collyer said “his initial impression was that he liked it, but would confer and call me back.”

According to the emails, which have been obtained by the Toronto-based organisation Environmental Defence, Oliver’s position would be crafted with industry input, explaining that Collyer had also discussed the matter with the association’s Vice President of markets and tar sands, Greg Stringham.

“He said they liked the proposal a lot,” Corey wrote in the email. “He termed it as an elegant solution that is worth pursuing.”

The email also said that Collyer would “quietly talk to a few more players,” and that another senior bureaucrat would then “write the position up so that it could be raised with the minister, if you are comfortable, as a possible position around which we could try to build support.”

Gillian McEachern, deputy campaign director at Environmental Defence said of the emails: “The federal government is supposed to represent the interests of Canadian citizens abroad, but it’s clear that the oil industry is now in the driver’s seat when it comes to our role on the world stage."

She added: “This is another example of the erosion of Canada’s democracy at the hands of the tar sands lobby, which not only threatens Canada’s air, water and land, but is actively trying to prevent good climate actions in other countries.”

For more information, click here.

A deadly tornado touched down near the city of Fultondale, Alabama on Jan. 25, 2021. Justin1569 / Wikipedia Commons / CC BY-SA 3.0

A tornado tore through a city north of Birmingham, Alabama, Monday night, killing one person and injuring at least 30.

Read More Show Less

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

An empty school bus by a field of chemical plants in "Cancer Alley," one of the most polluted areas of the U.S. that stretches from New Orleans to Baton Rouge, where oil refineries and petrochemical plants reside alongside suburban homes. Giles Clarke / Getty Images

By David Konisky

On his first day in office President Joe Biden started signing executive orders to reverse Trump administration policies. One sweeping directive calls for stronger action to protect public health and the environment and hold polluters accountable, including those who "disproportionately harm communities of color and low-income communities."

Read More Show Less

Trending

Pixabay

By Katherine Kornei

Clear-cutting a forest is relatively easy—just pick a tree and start chopping. But there are benefits to more sophisticated forest management. One technique—which involves repeatedly harvesting smaller trees every 30 or so years but leaving an upper story of larger trees for longer periods (60, 90, or 120 years)—ensures a steady supply of both firewood and construction timber.

Read More Show Less
Icebergs near Ilulissat, Greenland on Oct. 13, 2020. Climate change is having a profound effect with glaciers and the Greenland ice cap retreating. Ulrik Pedersen / NurPhoto via Getty Images

Earth's ice is melting 57 percent faster than in the 1990s and the world has lost more than 28 trillion tons of ice since 1994, research published Monday in The Cryosphere shows.

Read More Show Less
Caribbean islands such as Trinidad have plenty of water for swimming, but locals face water shortages for basic needs. Marc Guitard / Getty Images

By Jewel Fraser

Noreen Nunez lives in a middle-class neighborhood that rises up a hillside in Trinidad's Tunapuna-Piarco region.

Read More Show Less