Nov 052018
 

Background for:

2018-11-01 Alberta regulator privately estimates oilpatch’s financial liabilities are hundreds of billions more than what it told the public, National Observer

ALBERTA,  Oil patch liabilities “hundreds of billions”.

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“HUNDREDS OF BILLIONS” – CORRUPTION OF THE REGULATORY PROCESS

We are looking at corruption, the same as in third world countries that have resources to exploit.

Kevin Taft does an excellent job in his book  Oil’s Deep State  of telling the story for  Alberta and Ottawa,  but weaving in tactics and money originating in the U.S.   As I was reading, I was thinking:

  • you could change “Alberta and Ottawa” to “Saskatchewan and Ottawa“,  the story is the same.
  • you could change “Oil” to “Uranium and Nuclear”, the story is the same.
  • you could change “Oil” to “Seeds”, the story is the same.
  • we are fighting like hell to create a different story, if you change “Oil” to “Water”.

In short, Kevin Taft has documented a widely-used template.   The corporatocracy uses it.   It’s to our benefit to understand, and to apply it in our struggles.  Postings related to “Oil” only:

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Specific example, SASKATCHEWAN, but applies in other parts of Canada, too:

2018-06-07    Provincial Auditor Saskatchewan: abandoned oil & gas wells, $4 billion (Alberta will be many times more). Revolving door: former premier Brad Wall now at Osler Law Firm (help for Kinder Morgan). Before that, Dwayne Lingenfelter (NDP Deputy Premier) to Nexen (just one example).

EXCERPT:

Tax-payers across Canada – – maybe we should start tightening our belts ?   or, how about revolution?

  • The SK Provincial Auditor is talking potential $4 billion cleanup costs for abandoned wells
  • Alberta has many times more wells than Saskatchewan, wonder how much they’re adding to the tab?  (UPDATE:  The National Observer just answered the question – – thanks!)
  • We are also supposed to pony up $4.5 billion to buy a 50-year-old pipeline, and
  • Then add more billions to build a pipeline
  • While, 2018-06-01,  Every Canadian Already Gives $100 a Year to Big Oil, Study Reveals

 People from Saskatchewan and Alberta have a reputation for being tough people.   As far as I can see, they are getting fleeced by Government officials they adore, AND by the industry millionaires and billionaires.   After the money has been siphoned off, to people who are paid millions of dollars a year, and to “shareholders”,  Citizens across the country  are on the hook to pay billions upon billions of dollars for cleanups and bailouts.   And I’d guess,  billions more if we don’t do effective resistance.

Four items tie things together (Sask.):

  1.   Excerpt, 2018 Auditor General Saskatchewan Report:   future cleanup costs of oil & gas (o&g) wells could exceed $4 billion
  2.   Brad Wall, 2017,  starts work for Osler Law Firm (oil & gas, Kinder Morgan one of its clients) – 3 months after stepping down from Premier’s role.   (Wall is not a lawyer.)
  3.   The 2016 request from Brad Wall to the Federal Government, for $156 million to help with cleanup costs of estimated 1,000 abandoned wells.  Two years later the Provincial Auditor reports  30,000 abandoned wells and potentially $4 billion in costs.

(Not to mention the cost of cleanup related to the uranium industry in northern Saskatchewan.  In 2017 the costs for one mine were 10 times higher than the original $25M estimate.   No one pretends that these newspaper reports represent a comprehensive list of the cleanups to be done in northern Sask.   http://thestarphoenix.com/business/mining/abandoned-mine-cleanup-project-poses-a-deep-moral-problem.)      (also http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/saskatoon/uranium-gunnar-mine-cleanup-cost-saskatchewan-1.4114674))

There’s documented examples

  • the horrendous costs of cleaning up abandoned o&g wells, bodies of water and mines
  • all the while, there have been sweetheart royalty deals and tax avoidance.

Not addressed here:

  • health costs from pollution to pay for
  • exorbitant salaries and perks documented in other postings.

 

A TRICKLE IN TAXES and ROYALTIES PAID:

2018-10-26  CRA files appeal in multibillion-dollar tax case against Cameco, Saskatoon Star Phoenix

It’s possible that the appeal would not have happened without all the pressure mounted by Canadians to ensure that the CRA did its job.

And for oil and gas:

2017-10-26 Revealed: oil giants pay billions less tax in Canada than abroad, The Guardian

GOVT WEB PAGE.   DRILLING INCENTIVES.  Looks to me like the ROYALTY RATE is 2.5% in Saskatchewan, a fraction of what is collected in other countries.  The revolving door is no surprise.

 

CLEAN-UP, THE MINING INDUSTRY:

Just one example:

2018-06-09 Giant Mine, by Jimmy Thomson, The Narwhal (Yellowknife, Gold Mine, bankrupt, a billion dollar cleanup.)

a toxic smorgasbord of buildings, tailings ponds and a quarter-million tonnes of arsenic stored underground  . . .   before large amounts of arsenic start escaping from collapsing buildings.   … 

The poisoning from the Giant Mine has been known for a long time.   News is sneaking out, a billion dollars — ALL from tax-payers.

 

NOW FOR THE WHOPPER – – except that it’s the oilpatch’s liability, not ours – – if we stand together:

2018-11-01 Alberta regulator privately estimates oilpatch’s financial liabilities are hundreds of billions more than what it told the public, National Observer

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Anyhow, after reading    Alberta regulator privately estimates oilpatch’s financial liabilities are hundreds of billions more than what it told the public, National Observer, 

it’s important to remind ourselves about the Corporatocracy that is running the show.   Alberta regulator privately estimates   is just one piece in a much larger picture that stinks.

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