Dec 222008

My letter to the Premier (#7) is my Christmas gift to the Great Sand Hills in western Saskatchewan.

Corporate influence.  Put it on the table, out in the open.  There is little sense in arguing on behalf of the environment or security of a natural gas supply, when the motivator is the money, not the environment and not minus 32 degree weather.










(6)  THY WILL BE DONE  (your letter to the Premier of Saskatchewan)




The work on the skullduggery in the Great Sand Hills is the work of citizens.  Even after the problems are brought to light, both parties keep their mouths closed on the very serious problems.

The Government does something only after they have been forced by public pressure.  My letter to the Premier lays out the reason:  revolving doors, conflicts-of-interest, and corporate funding. (Corporate funding of political parties is prohibited federally thanks to Jean Chretien; provincially it is acceptable for corporations to fund political parties.)

We need as many letters to the Premier and Minister of Environment as we can possibly generate (#6 below).  If only to address the problems created by Government that serves the corporations.



It is minus thirty-two degrees in Saskatchewan today.  “Peak Oil” is past.  We are on the downhill side of the supply curve.

The infrastructure to heat our homes is largely based on natural gas.  We are DEPENDENT on natural gas for heat.  Under NAFTA we have to continue to export the same PROPORTION of our oil and gas to the U.S. as currently.   (Mexico refused to have this clause in their agreement with the U.S. and Canada.)  The pipelines being built today are not to serve Canadians.  There are no trans-Canada lines.  Only pipelines to Chicago and other places in the U.S.  The natural gas supplies are projected to deplete with greater and greater rapidity, before oil.

Unfortunately not everyone can afford to move to Hawaii.  It’ll get a little crowded there, too.

This sell-off of our main heat source is incomprehensible.  Gross ignorance.

Or “have to have it all today”.  Or “next generation” – – what the hell?

They’ll figure it out.”  “Technology” will provide the answers.  “Somebody else … ”  “Me, I like things the way they are.”  Two plus two, plus two, equals minus two hundred and twenty-two.



The inhospitable nature of the Great Sand Hills has made them a place of last refuge for species threatened by extinction.  To destroy that place so we can “develop” and export a natural gas supply that will last a short time, so we can put some coins in our pockets-full-of-holes is … (you fill in the blanks).



When a soul leaves its bones behind, if Blackfoot, it journeys to the Great Sand Hills to join Infinite Life.  Souls walking about in skin may not go there.

Think what happens to a society when nothing is sacred.  Water, for example.

Dependent … for life.  That’s what sacred is.  Some people still don’t “get it”.

Back in 2003 we learned about “fracking” (the man-induced fracturing of underground formations to release gas from natural pockets).  Which also happens to allow poisons to then seep into underground water supplies through holy pockets.  Voluminous amounts of potable water that the Government allows the oil and gas companies to poison AND to divert underground; the water is permanently lost to the rain-evaporation cycle.

In a desert.  More desert.



Without thick hair I would be bald from pulling out my hair.  I may scream if I hear the growth mantra gush out of the mouth of one more incapable-of-thought idiot.  It doesn’t matter how much “technology” or “higher education” you have.  You cannot have continuous growth premised on consumption when the supply side is a finite resource.  It is apparent that you must shift to a different paradigm.

“Economic growth and development” is so obviously an idea that has to be replaced.  For the sake of our grandchildren, we cannot afford to be robots with programmed thinking that doesn’t adapt and change with reality.

History, for the sake of heaven, has ample example of civilizations that turned Eden into desert, then vanished on the wind.

The best way to ensure that you don’t have descendants is to cut down the last tree.  That’s been done by human societies a number of times over.  Trees aren’t even a finite resource – they are renewable.


(6)  THY WILL BE DONE  (your letter to the Premier of Saskatchewan)

Thy will be done.

Whose will?

I vote for our informed will, in service to common sense and the future we bequeath to our grand-children.

It CAN be our informed will.  IF there are enough of us.  Email addresses for the Premier and Environment Minister follow.

If you haven’t already, would you send a quick note to members of the Saskatchewan Government, at least to the Premier?  And ask anyone else you know who would be interested, to do the same? You don’t have to live in Saskatchewan.  These are national issues.

There is a window of opportunity now, before the Government announces its decision on the GSH.  It will be too late, after the decision is announced.

The United Church got 400 signatures in, during the last go-around.  Need something like that again!  The letters don’t have to say much.  The Govt just has to know that large numbers of people are watching.

The Honourable Brad Wall, Premier of Saskatchewan

E-mail: premier AT

(Please provide your full name and mailing address as any response from the Premier of Saskatchewan will be delivered by Canada Post.)

Minister Environment, Nancy Heppner

Minister.ENV AT



(His response (already received): the letter “outlining (my) concerns and opposition to proposals for resource exploitation and development of the GSH”,  is referred to the Minister of Environment (Nancy Heppner) for detailed response.)

Dear Brad,

You would not have been privy to the volume of public pressure on the Government of Saskatchewan that led to the scientific study of the Great Sand Hills.  You were not in office at the time.

I can tell you how fiercely the battle was fought and over how many years.   The study did not come about easily.  There are large numbers of people with a substantial investment of time, expertise and interest.  The citizens of Saskatchewan have invested several millions of dollars now, in addition to time, to see that we do justice in the Great Sand Hills.

The Saskatchewan Party is in a vulnerable position vis-à-vis the Great Sand Hills, if I may speak frankly and to the point, as I did with the NDP when they were in power.

In the case of the NDP, Dwayne Lingenfelter went from Deputy Premier to Vice-President of Nexen.  TransGas, crown corporation, wholly-owned subsidiary of SaskEnergy, built a $9 million pipeline to the Great Sand Hills.  The number one and only listed customer of Transgas was Nexen.

SaskEnergy held a fraudulent press conference about “new discoveries” of natural gas in the GSH while Ron Clark was president.  I know because I phoned and spoke with the Executives of each of the 3 companies who were supposed to have found the new reserves.  And I spoke with an employee of Transgas who confirmed what the o&g Executives said.  “The Government is putting words in the mouth of the companies that they wouldn’t say  themselves.”  There were no “new finds”, except in newspaper reports based on the fraudulent information presented at the press conference.  (INSERT: I didn’t mention about the other revolving door between employees of the Dept of Environment (e.g. Larry Kratt, co-chair of SPIGEC, the Sask Petroleum Industry Government Environment Committee – and the industry’s high-paying jobs in Calgary.)

Elwin Hermansson courted the Petroleum Club.  In your case, you have been at least twice to Alberta to raise money for the SaskParty.  That creates debts to be repaid.

In conclusion, decisions made for political as opposed to scientific reasons, about the Great Sand Hills will be highly suspect.  And highly inappropriate, especially given the substantial investment of time and money by the people of Saskatchewan in the scientific study of the Great Sand Hills.

I say this, not to assert that the decisions WILL be politically and financially motivated.  I say it because I have always found prevention to be less painful for all concerned.

My note may sound coercive.  I think you will find it factual and in good faith.  I am motivated by the words of a senior doctor, recipient of an Order of Canada, at one of the GSH public meetings.  In the more than a decade since the last time the people of Saskatchewan had forced public meetings on the GSH, the Government had not made one step of progress in assembling the scientific data required for sound decision-making, and as had been agreed would be carried out.

As I understand political evolution in Canada, people are at the end of  their tether.  There is growing awareness of the failure of our system of governance to protect the things we value and need for the present and for future generations. Thanks to books and documentaries like “The Corporation” by UBC law professor Joel Bakan, people have a better understanding of the role of the large corporations in the undermining of good governance.  They will not put up with “partnerships” that serve corporate interests at the expense of the public good and for the enrichment of those who are motivated solely by money.

With due respect, I understand that there were different premiers in office at the time.

This matter is too important to pussyfoot around the issues.

I hope that the Government of Saskatchewan will follow the advice of the Scientific Study on the Great Sand Hills.

Yours truly,

Sandra Finley

Saskatoon SK  S7N 0L1

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