When Tailing Ponds Let Go

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"...We were in no actual danger for if the ice cut us off on the trail, we could climb the tar-sand hills back from the river. But those hills were brushy and rough and that would mean a very hard hike, especially with the baby. Walter wasn't as concerned as I was, for he had never lived close to a big north-country river, but he took my word for it, and we started to hurry back. We had not gone a quarter mile when the jam began moving slowly down, and with blasts like the crash of cannon, the three-foot-thick ice ahead of it, where we were, started to break and go.
 
The Athabasca was over a half mile wide there, but there was no room in the channel for that huge, moving mountain of ice. The whole groaning, cracking mass ground and shoved its way along with unbelievable force, tearing trees out by the roots, gouging away tons of riverbank, and where the shore was low, pushing onto the land, flattening brush and tipping trees in a smashed tangled rubble. At a small canyon, we found it thrusting onto the shore for about 400 yards, and we made a long rough detour up the hill, and then clawed our way through the thick stuff back to the trail.
 
Back at Fort McMurray we met a sight that was hard to believe. A huge ridge of ice was piling up on the three-acre island in the middle of the river, plowing and churning trees, earth, rock until the whole island was ground away. Then the ice stopped moving, except for a muddy channel one hundred feet wide on our side. Another jam had formed. That jam backed the ice up a mile up the Clearwater, tearing boats apart, knocking down houses, and wrecking a sawmill. Many people took refuge on the hill behind the settlement. But within an hour the pent-up force of the mighty river broke the jam, and the ice moved once more..."

Now check out this GoogleEarth image of some of the tailings ponds along the Athabasca

When, not if, those tailings ponds discharge their effluent into the river, that will irreparably pollute the Mackenzie River watershed all the way to the Arctic Ocean, - the 10th largest river system on the planet.

This horrific scenario underlines the dreadful Greenwash fraud of the Gordon Campbell regime, which is encouraging the development of an 1100 km, one metre diametre pipeline right across our province, to deliver tar-sands oil to the BC coast, which will then be loaded onto a veritable super-tanker traffic-jam of 200+ 1000ft VLCC's (Very Large Crude Carriers) to be distributed to the worlds insatiable internal combustion engines.
 
We have to ask, - how is it that renowned Nobel-prize winning climatologist Andrew Weaver and the various other collaborationist sycophants, (ForestEthics, Dogwood, Pembina etc.) who helped reelect this government can purport to care about our beleaguered planet.

 

Ingmar Lee is an environmental activist who lives on the BC Central Coast, in the so-called, purportedly protected 'Great Bear Rainforest', - right in the Dirty-Oil supertanker pathway.  
 

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