Jul. 10, 2020

The great hoax of pipelines

Have you ever wondered why pipelines are considered a horrible environmental blight in Canada, but nowhere else in the world?
The answer is that Canada cannot market its oil and gas products without pipelines. If vested interests want to keep Canada out of participating in the world petroleum markets, they only have to demonize pipelines, making it impossible to extend or build new pipelines to seaports and domestic markets and the mission is accomplished.

The highly successful environmental push to block Canada’s petroleum industry growth and with it a booming economy, full employment and billions for research into more efficient and effective ways to burn petroleum products more cleanly is a highly successful public relations campaign that has no basis in fat or truth.

It is not the first time we have been hoaxed by industrialists and investors protecting their profits and influence. Consider alcohol advertising prior to our adding up the carnage on our streets when inebriated drivers take the wheel, tobacco advertising before we connected smoking and lung cancer and promotion of a diabetes medication prominent for years until it was linked to deterioration of kidney function.

Advertising (public relations - PR) campaigns are designed to shape our views and thinking. They aim at feelings and sensibilities rather than logic and reason. It is incredible that adults have accepted that 17 year old Greta Thunberg brought important messages on climate change. Are we really that incredibly gullible?

An instinctual hatred of pipelines is a conditioned response to the wider public relations campaign of vilifying carbon products, not because they are harmful, but because we are much more easily manipulated, regulated and taxed if we are convinced that we should be fearful for our future.

As the years pass, and the dire predictions of climate change catastrophe fail to materialize, we realize we have been deceived. That is laden with difficulty. No one will admit that he or she has been hoodwinked.

During the pipeline PR campaign we have seen a variety of indigenous and academic persons interviewed. If we listen carefully, we can identify the PR scripts. The people motivated by the campaign must stay “on script” for the campaign to succeed, hence activists are armed with talking points. One giveaways is that when an activist or academic is asked a question he responds with memorized talking points rather than answer the question.

If you choose to believe that a half-dozen traditional indigenous chiefs in northern British Columbia created the arguments they put forth respecting traditional indigenous sovereignty without spending large sums of money on research, organizing a cross country media campaign to keep their message front and center and have dominated the national and international news outlets for all but the first six days of February, you are welcome to your delusions.

Maintaining a public relations campaign for more than a few days is prohibitively expensive. When something looks suspicious to us, follow the money. Where is the money coming from that drives this PR campaign? Who stand to gain by keeping Canada out of the world petroleum market?

Claims by our government that it is committed to reducing world carbon emissions are rubbish. Our government is complicit in keeping Canada out of the world petroleum market, Canada has no control over petroleum demand and supply.

Developing nations, who outnumber developed nations need energy to grow and prosper. It takes energy to light houses, provide a water supply, pump sewage, build highways and rail networks to move raw and finished goods to market, distribute imports, run mills and factories. Much of that energy comes from coal. Burning diesel or even better, natural gas reduces carbon output.

Like most ideologues, our federal government is hoist on its own petard; Canadian oil and gas can help to reduce carbon emissions overseas by replacing coal plants and our clean technologies can even further reduce harmful industrial emissions. The environmental public relations effort is highly misleading in its zeal to demonize carbon while excluding and ignoring all other emissions.

Carbon dioxide is an odourless, colourless gas that does not cause or contribute to the smog that is choking many cities. Canada’s clean technologies can help to alleviate industrial and public service emissions and reduce smog. However, we need development of our resources to improve and export those technologies.