The clandestine purpose of the Northern Gateway, Enbridge and Keystone Pipelines – grand theft fresh water.News Sunday, April 15th, 2012
Enormous amounts of fresh water are used every day by oil and gas companies in hydraulic fracturing of gas and oil. Just how much is revealed by the Canadian Tar Sands strip mining operation in Alberta. According to the Alberta government – It takes 3-5 barrels of fresh water to fabricate (Invent or concoct something, typically with deceitful intent.) a single barrel of synthetic oil from the tar sands. (source – http://www.energy.alberta.ca/oilsands/791.asp#Water%20Usage). Because the Alberta Tar Sands operation is a strip “mining operation” it consumes twice that amount of fresh water. Again, according to the Alberta government – “In mining operations, 7.5 to 10 barrels of water is used for every barrel of SCO (Synthetic Crude Oil aka imitation or fake oil) produced.”
Fresh water is in very short supply throughout the United States. Not because of a fabricated Global warming threat that is falsely being used as an excuse for droughts but because oil and gas companies have dried up thousands of lakes, rivers and stream in the hydraulic fracturing of oil and gas. Each oil well in the United States that uses the technique known as hydraulic fracturing, requires about six million gallons of water just to break open rocks far below the surface and release oil and natural gas.
Because so much fresh water is needed to extract oil and gas the US Obama government and the Canadian Conservative government of Stephen Harper have agreed to construct a 3,456 km (2,147 mi) Northern Gateway / Keystone Pipeline from Canada to the United States. The official stated purpose is to transport synthetic crude oil and diluted (mostly water) bitumen from the Athabasca Oil Sands. But the true purpose of the Northern Gateway / Keystone Pipeline is to transport Canada’s supply of fresh water and the remaining US fresh water reserves to multiple oil and gas fracking and refining destinations in the United States. Canadian water and bitumen contaminated water will be transported to refineries in Illinois, to the Cushing oil distribution hub in Oklahoma, and to refineries and export terminals along the Gulf Coast of Texas.
Why is Stephen Harper, the BC government, the Alberta government and the BC Superior Court involved in the grand theft of Canada’s finite and precious fresh water supply? Mr. Brownlow, who has a Ph.D. in geochemistry, says it takes 407 million gallons to irrigate 640 acres and grow about $200,000 worth of corn on arid land. The same amount of water, he says, could be used to frack enough wells to generate $2.5 billion worth of oil. “No water, no frack, no wealth,” says Mr. Brownlow, who has leased his cattle ranch for oil exploration. So accordingly, greed is the motive for corruption by Stephen Harper, the BC government, the Alberta government and their appointed superior court judges.
“Energy production requires large amounts of water, and transporting water requires large amounts of energy,” said Danny Reible, the faculty lead at Cockrell School of Engineering’s water-energy nexus research and a professor in the Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering Department. “Moreover, many of our most sustainable energy choices, such as biofuels, seemingly have unsustainable demands for water. By ensuring our water future, we will reduce the number of limitations on our energy choices.” The first quoted statement is true as even the Alberta government admits to this fact. The second quoted statement is false. Biofuel is made naturally without using any water. Biofuel is made from a decaying biological material such as wood, grass, leaves and other dead plant material, animal feces, and kitchen waste, in the absence of oxygen.
Biogas is produced by the anaerobic digestion of biodegradable materials such as biomass, manure, sewage, municipal waste, green waste, plant material, and crops.Biogas comprises primarily methane (CH4) and carbon dioxide (CO2) and may have small amounts of hydrogen sulphide (H2S), moisture and siloxanes. Anaerobic digestion uses no added water. Adding fresh water to the anaerobic process would impede and prevent the decomposition of the biodegradable material.
The Northern Gateway / Keystone Pipelines were intentionally designed to connect it with more than 1,000 streams and rivers. In Montana, the Keystone pipeline would cross the Yellowstone River, a major tributary into the Missouri River and the longest undammed river in the lower 48 states. The river is of vital use for fishermen and recreationalists, and is a major irrigation source for farmers and ranchers.
The St. Clair River provides drinking water for millions in Southeast Michigan and the Enbridge pipeline runs under the river and is due to be replaced by the Keystone Pipeline. The St. Clair River drains into Lake St. Clair, the Detroit River, and Lake Erie.
The Keystone pipeline was intentionally designed to connect with the Ogallala Aquifer, one of the world’s largest freshwater aquifers that provides 30 percent of the ground water used for irrigation in the United States, and drinking water for millions of Americans. The aquifer covers areas in South Dakota, Nebraska, Wyoming, Colorado, Kansas, Oklahoma, New Mexico, and Texas.
The Keystone pipeline will cross the Mississippi River in Missouri, near the confluence of the Mississippi and Missouri Rivers, and terminates just across the river in Illinois. The Enbridge pipelines already crosses the northern part of the Mississippi River in Minnesota.
The longest river on the continent and the route of the Lewis and Clark expedition, the Missouri is crossed by pipelines in numerous places, including by Keystone pipeline on the South Dakota-Nebraska border and the Kansas-Missouri border, by Enbridge pipelines in Missouri, and by the proposed Keystone pipeline in Montana, near the relatively isolated Upper Missouri River Breaks National Monument.
The Keystone pipeline would cross the Red River on the Oklahoma Texas border. The Neches River is the last river in East Texas with abundant wildlife, clean water, scenic river vistas, and forests. The Keystone
pipeline would cross the Neches River in Texas.
Do you see why the Keystone Pipeline was intentionally designed to connect with all of the major fresh water reservoirs in the United States? If you want to physically see the connection between the Keystone pipeline and the stealing and transportation of fresh water look for new construction of pumping stations along the proposed pipeline’s route. Pumping stations will be built at these streams, rivers, lakes and aquifers and water from them will be taken and pumped into the pipeline and transported, illegally, to and throughout the United States where it will be used, not for drinking, cooking, cleaning or for life sustaining crop irrigation, but for hydraulic fracturing of gas and oil.
Hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, has revived dead or dying for oil and gas companies in the U.S.. At the expense of wasting billions of barrels of life essential fresh drinking water. Fracking uses very toxic chemicals mixed with fresh drinking water to extract oil and gas. As soon as the chemicals are mixed with the water the water is forever contaminated and the tailings eventually contaminates all underground aquifers. Towns, cities, urban dwellings and farms get their fresh water from those underground aquifers. Where will the cities and town and urban dwelling people get their drinking water if the oil and gas companies consume all the water that is available in the streams, rivers, lakes and underground aquifers? Nowhere. It is just financially impossible to truck in water.
The biggest challenge to future oil and gas extraction is simply getting access to sufficient water. North Dakota, another heavy user of fresh water for hydraulic fracturing is quickly depleting aquifers and has actually threatened to sue the federal government to free up water held by an Army Corps of Engineers dam. Oil and gas companies are threatening to sue the US government for not proving them with the water that everyone in the state of North Dakota needs to survive. That is the true purpose of the Keystone Pipeline. Oil and gas companies threatening to sue “the people” of the United States so that they can continue to steal water from the United States people.
In South Texas, tensions are rising as oil and gas companies scramble to lock up water supplies to drill natural-gas and oil wells. All across the state, companies have been on a buying spree, snapping up rights to scarce river water—easily outbidding traditional users such as farmers and cities. Led by Exxon Mobil Corp. all oil and gas companies are now drilling water wells, three times as many as they did five years ago. They are even tapping into municipal water systems, though dried out cities have begun cutting them off.
The people of Penobsquis, New Brunswick can tell the US people what will happen to hundreds of communities throughout the US, if the Keystone Pipeline is allowed to be built.
In 2000 and 2001, the first two natural gas wells were drilled in Penobsquis. They were allegedly drilled because a local potash mining operation run by PotashCorp was looking for a place to pump the water that was flowing into their mine – instead they found gas. These two gas wells now provide natural gas to the Penobsquis Potash Corp Mine. The gas wells were drilled in conjunction with Corridor Resources, a junior oil and gas company.
In 2004, the drilling of several more gas wells immediately coincided with the loss of water at several Penobsquis homes. Several homeowners found no water or muddy water the next time they went to their taps for water. The process used to extract gas from wells, hydraulic fracturing (fracking), was and is used at those gas wells adjacent to the potash mine workings. This process, which creates cracks in rock to let the gas out, caused underground aquifer water to start to drain into the potash mine. The cap rock over the potash mine workings was more brittle than expected and was cracked due to the oil and gas well fracking. Because the aquifer is less than 150m (492ft) from the surface and as this aquifer is being drained faster than it is being recharged it is resulting in the ground settling or subsiding.
More than 60 water wells and springs have been lost over several years in Penobsquis. Why? Because oil and gas well fracking of Corridor Resources’ 30 gas wells caused the draining of their water supply. Oil and gas fracking caused the cap rock over the potash mine to crack and allow local area residence well water to flow into the mine. Just how much water is pouring into the potash mine because of oil and gas fracking? Originally, the water leakage was hauled away by about 300 fossil fuel guzzling tractor trailer loads – everyday. In 2010, a brine pipeline was constructed to allegedly pump the flood water away, but it still appears that truckloads of water are being hauled away approximately every 5-6 minutes. Why are they still trucking water away? The brine pipeline wasn’t constructed to pump water out of the mine it was constructed to inject brine water into the gas wells and extract the natural gas. Brine water is used because it has a higher densities than fresh water but lacks solid particles that might damage producible formations. Most of the injected fluid is salt water (brine). Salt (sodium chloride) is a waste by-product of all potash mining. Get it yet? The gas wells were intentionally drilled near the potash mine – free water supply and free salt supply. Add salt from the potash mine to the fresh water from the Penobsquis residents’ well water and you have oil and gas extracting brine. The gas well extraction using brine water injection into the wells is the root cause of both the mine flooding and the loss of water for its Penobsquis neighbors.
For 8 years now, Penobsquis residents have been forced to have their water trucked to their homes at taxpayer expense, with bottled water being provided by PotashCorp as “good corporate citizens”.
Penobsquis residents are now burdened with another major hardship – drastically reduced property value. Because of the oil and gas brine water injecting no one in Penobsquis can sell their homes now. Who is going to buy a property that has no water? Their properties are worthless without the water that the gas company stole.
Ask the Penobsquis residents if they have been affected by oil and gas fracking. You can contact them directly through their website “The Concerned Citizens of Penobsquis” – http://www.penobsquis.ca/ . The Concerned Citizens of Penobsquis is a community organization, formed to seek justice and compensation for the damage caused by the potash mine. Today, the group is taking on the impacts of both potash mining and natural gas exploration and fracking in our rural community.
The Concerned Citizens of Penobsquis do not want to see what happened to them happen anywhere else. “We feel that mining interests should not be allowed to come to a community and create irreversible damage, and have residents bear the cost of that damage.”
The following map outlines the routes for the Enbridge Gas Pipeline, the Keystone Pipeline, and the Keystone XL pipeline from Canada, through the US, to Texas. Notice how the Enbridge pipeline already hooks up with all of the Great Lakes and then proceeds down through the US to join up with the Keystone pipelines. The Keystone pipeline and the proposed Keystone XL pipeline were intentionally designed and built to make a connection with the Ogallala Aquifer. Intentionally is proven by the fact that the pipeline isn’t being built to go straight from Canada to Texas. The shortest distance between to points is a straight line. If the intent was to transport Canadian fake oil to the US why go thousands of miles off course and hook up with all of the major water reservoirs? Because it isn’t oil that is being transported by pipeline, it’s fresh water.
Click on the map image below to enlarge the view size.
Notice that Canada’s largest city, Toronto, does not benefit from any of the pipelines nor does Canada’s second largest city, Montreal Quebec even though the Enbridge Pipeline is freely feeding off of the fresh water reservoirs (Lake Ontario and the St Lawrence Seaway) they rely on to survive. Canada’s 4 largest cities will not benefit from the pipelines. Not Vancouver, BC which is Canada’s 3rd largest city. Not even the capital of Canada, Ottawa, Canada’s 4th largest city. The 12,956,937 Canadians who live in those 4 largest Canadian cities are being robbed of their essential supply of fresh water. Robbed because they are getting nothing in return for the water that is being “taken” by Enbridge Gas and oil and gas company TransCanada (the company that is building and owns the Keystone Pipelines).
The clandestine fresh water theft is just the tip of the iceberg. There is another major threat to the environment and mankind posed by hydraulic fracturing for oil and gas – earthquakes. Induced earthquakes in oil and gas production has been observed ever since the 1930s, i.e., ever since the large scale extraction of fossil fuels began. The most famous early instance was in Wilmington, California, where the oil production triggered a series of damaging earthquakes. In this instance the cause of the earthquakes were due to rapid extraction of oil without replacement of fluids – i.e. water. Once this was realized the oil extraction process was changed with fresh water being injected to mitigate the probability of triggering earthquakes. Ever since then the oil and gas industry has adopted these practices to mitigate earthquakes, but also mitigate damage to the oil wells in the producing field (wells would be sheared off in the subsurface as subsidence occurred).
In the last decade a number of examples on earthquake activity related to oil and gas production as well as injection of water under high pressure have been observed, although not with as serious consequences as for Wilmington. Almost all induced earthquakes associated with petroleum extraction can be traced to either water injection or extraction. In some recent cases injection of produced water (permanently contaminated water produced by injecting fresh water in oil and gas extraction) has produce significant seismic activity. Examples are in Colorado and Texas where gas and oil production uses extremely large amounts of water that must be put injected underground to replace the extracted oil and gas. In some cases the water cannot be put back exactly where it was produced and over pressurization of the water causes induced earthquakes.
US oil and gas companies attempts to get Canadian fresh water through NAFTA
Canada is the largest single owner of fresh water resources in the world. This vast abundance of water has prompted some (mainly US oil and gas companies) to advocate its export to water-poor regions, primarily oil and gas fracking poor, regions of the United States. The debate over whether to export water from Canada has continued over the past three decades. Although the federal government’s policy officially opposing large-scale exports has been in place since 1987, public fears nevertheless continue. These fears have been heightened by concerns of critics over the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and its predecessor, the Canada-United States Free Trade Agreement (FTA), which were not in place when the debate over water exports began.
On 25 August 1988, the then Minister of the Environment, the Hon. Tom McMillan, tabled in the House of Commons Bill C-156, the Canada Water Preservation Act.(3) The Minister stated that he was tabling the bill to give legal force to the federal government’s commitment, expressed in its water policy announced in November 1987, that it would oppose large-scale water exports from Canada. Within weeks of its introduction and before it could be considered by a parliamentary committee, the bill died on the Order Paper when Progressive Conservative majority Prime Minister Brian Mulroney dissolved Parliament (Conservatives are famous for disrupting, proroguing, willfully acting in contempt of and dissolving the Parliamentary process when it conflicts with their pro-American agenda) on October 1, 1988.
According to investigative journalist and author of the book “On the Take: Crime, Corruption and Greed in the Mulroney Years”, Stevie Cameron “There was plenty of crime and a record number of Tory politicians, lobbyists and their associates under police investigation, charged or convicted; the system of contracts and appointments was utterly corrupt; the greed was extraordinary and blatant.”
Had Bill C-156 been enacted into law, it would have prohibited the export from Canada of outright large-scale freshwater exports, such as those involving inter-basin transfers between river systems, and strictly regulated small-scale exports, such as those involving shipments by tanker or pipeline. Very small-scale exports, such as water used in manufactured goods and bottled or packaged water, would not have been affected by the legislation.
However, the governments of Canada, the United States and Mexico have expressly stated that the NAFTA does not apply to water in its natural state. The three NAFTA countries clearly stated in their joint declaration of December 1993 that the NAFTA does not apply to water in its natural state in lakes, rivers, etc., because the water has not at that point “entered into commerce and become a good” for purposes of the NAFTA. So far all attempts by US oil and gas companies have failed. The Keystone Pipelines and the Enbridge Gas Pipeline are covert attempts by US oil and gas companies to secretly steal both Canada’s fresh water supply and the last remaining US fresh water reserves, bypassing both the US and Canadian governments and NAFTA.
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