Global Policy Forum

Oil and Natural Gas in Conflict - North America


Articles and Documents


Complaining About Mosquito Bites While a Crocodile Bites our Leg (May 1, 2011)

Gas prices are surging higher as global demand increases and instability in the Middle East has raised questions about shortfalls in supply. American oil and gas companies are setting record profits in the wake of advancing prices at the pump. Drivers grumble but they miss the larger point. Instead of blaming oil companies, people should come to terms with their own role in depleting the world’s natural resources. (Post Carbon Institute)


FEDS Knew of Gulf Oil Spill Risks in 2000, Document Says (June 8, 2010)

In 2000 the US Interior Department's Minerals and Management Service (MMS) published a report explaining the hazards of deepwater oil drilling. The report detailed the environmental implications of a deepwater blowout and foreshadowed the consequences of a disaster akin to the BP spill in the Gulf. The MMS had the opportunity to bring these risks to the forefront of its agenda but as the pressure to find more oil sources mounted, the financial rewards outweighed the environmental consequences. The MMS downplayed the environmental impact of deepwater drilling and approved numerous deepwater oil projects. The MMS' own report implicates the Department of negligent behavior as it shows that the BP oil spill was preventable had the risks of the operation been properly assessed and managed. (IRIN)

Brace Yourself: This is the Tip of the Iceberg for Oil-Induced Enviro Catastrophes (May 17, 2010)

Despite the outrage over the recent oil-spill, consumer behavior has not changed. In reality, the latest spill is only one of the many environmental casualties that will occur as hyper consumption continues and the supply of oil becomes more difficult to obtain. While more stringent safety and environmental regulations will have positive short-run outcomes, long-term sustainability depends on cleaner, renewable energy sources. (AlterNet)



The Urgent Threat to world Peace is... Canada (November 30, 2009)

Canada is turning into a corrupt petro-state, says George Monbiot of The Guardian. With the Canadian economy increasingly depending on the revenues from oil extracted in the infamous "tar sands," the government has adjusted its environmental policy accordingly. Not only has Canada abandoned its target to cut greenhouse gases under the Kyoto Protocol, it has also been playing an obstructive role in Commonwealth negotiations to establish binding targets. This makes Canada one of the major obstacles to an agreement in Copenhagen. (The Guardian)


High Stakes in Canada's Vast Oil-Sands Fields (September 30, 2008)

Canada has the world's second largest oil reserves, which attract more than US$100 billion of investments from oil companies. But aboriginal communities and non-governmental organizations argue that when companies access the oil reserves they damage the environment by producing large amounts of greenhouse gas and polluting drinking water. According to the author, the Canadian government continues to approve new oil projects without protecting the environment. (Christian Science Monitor)


Don't Worry Canada, We Still Want Your Oil (April 4, 2003)

After Canada officially refused to support the war on Iraq, US Ambassador Paul Cellucci made the conciliatory remark that Canada is a bigger and more reliable source of oil than Saudi Arabia in the post-9/11 world. According to this article, Cellucci's remarks reveal underlying US interests, and point to the kind of friendship that should be avoided. (Straight Goods)

Beyond Petroleum, Or Beyond The Pale? BP Left Out In The Cold (January 23, 2003)

Despite the fact that oil company BP is trying to convince the world that it cares about pollution, global warming, labor rights, and the environment, major shareholders and advocacy groups see through the slick campaign, and some are considering dropping the company's shares. (Independent)


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