Largest proposed oil sands mine presents unacceptable economic, climate risks

Stand.earth, Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis raise concerns about project

Unceded Coast Salish Territories (VANCOUVER, BC) — The Frontier Oil Sands Mine Project Joint Review Panel begins public hearings today, Tuesday, September 25, on whether to allow the development of the new mega-mine in Alberta proposed by Vancouver-based Teck Resources. The largest oil sands project ever proposed, the project is expected to cost more than $20 billion and become operational in 2026 and continue operation for 41 years.  

International environmental organization Stand.earth and US-based Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA) have raised serious economic and environmental concerns about the project.

“Canadians need to have a rational discussion about the future of the oil sands. We aren’t saying the oil sands should down — what we are saying is they are big enough already,” said Tzeporah Berman, Deputy Director of Stand.earth. “The world's energy and transportation systems are changing. Even China and India are moving away from cars powered by fossil fuels. Canada needs to start diversifying our economy now, if we want to avoid being left behind.” 

“In order to ensure a safe climate, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, along with most global leaders, committed to an 80% reduction in CO2 emissions by 2050. The math simply doesn’t add up — we can’t meet our international commitments while continuing to grow the oil and gas industry,” added Berman.

A new report by IEEFA Director Tom Sanzillo — "Significant Financial Risks Confront Teck’s Frontier Oil Sands Mine Project" — outlines the financial risks associated with the mine. Sanzillo, the former deputy comptroller of New York State, will testify October 4 at the hearings in Fort McMurray.

"This tar sands project offers an incredibly weak financial case. This project is not commercially viable,” said Sanzillo.

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Media contacts: 

Tzeporah Berman, Deputy Director, Stand.earth, tzeporah@stand.earth,  604-313-4713

Tom Sanzillo, Director, Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA), 518-505-1186 (US)