Magazine article New Internationalist

Dirty Diplomacy

Magazine article New Internationalist

Dirty Diplomacy

Article excerpt

Canadian Environmental Minister Jim Prentice was met by a group of protesting polar bears when he arrived at the White House to meet with Environmental Protection Agency administrator Lisa Jackson and Energy Secretary Steven Chu in March. The protest followed a mounting chorus of concern about Canada's tar sands - a particularly dirty form of petroleum deposit from which heavy oil is extracted - from First Nations, environmental groups and scientists.

'The Canadian Government's singular focus on handling the tar sands with kid gloves has become a lightning rod for environmental activism on both sides of the border,' explained Merran Smith, Director of Climate with ForestEthics. 'Canadians need to start asking themselves how much political capital and how much of our national agenda we are willing to sacrifice in Washington, defending the world's dirtiest oil. …

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