Watch Dirty Oil putlocker
||IMDB Rating: 6.5/10 from N/A votes
||Release: 01 Oct 2009 /
||Genre: Documentary, News
||Director: Leslie Iwerks,
||Stars: Documentary, News
||Synopsis: Deep behind-the-scenes into the strip-mined world of Alberta, Canada, where the vast and toxic Tar Sands deposit supplies the U.S. with the majority of its oil. Through the eyes of ...
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Michael Moore and Al Gore have a lot to answer for. They popularised
the campaigning documentary, with films such as Roger and Me,
Fahrenheit 9/11 and An Inconvenient Truth, and now new docs are being
pumped out faster than Saudi crude. And 'crude' is a decent summation
of the ideas contained in most of them.
Dirty Oil says this has 'staggering' environmental costs. The
extraction process is messy, leaving huge pools of 'tailings', a mix of
water and sand with an unhealthy dose of some nasty, bitumen-related
chemicals. The film suggests that the pollution from the extraction
process threatens the health of local people and wildlife. Worse, the
carbon emissions from this 'dirty' oil are helping to push the world
towards catastrophic climate change.
The film opens by asking Americans where they think their oil comes
from. 'Saudi Arabia' and 'the Middle East' are the common answers.
Wrong. As a Canadian journalist notes: 'For the past seven years,
Canada has been the number one supplier of oil to the United States
are the new Saudi Arabia.' The press notes for Dirty Oil actually state
that: 'It is a little known fact that America imports the majority of
its oil from Canada and not the Middle East.' But this is nonsense. The
biggest single source of America's oil is America itself; 36 per cent
of US crude is produced domestically. It's a far cry from the glory
days when the US produced all its own oil, but it does put into
perspective the idea that the US is dependent on unstable dictatorships
to keep chugging along, and rather makes a mockery of the idea that the
Iraq War was really a war for oil.
After this dubious start, obviously aimed at convincing Americans that
This Stuff Really Matters, Dirty Oil takes us to the new oil boom town
of Fort McMurray, where a 26-year-old worker describes how he manages
to earn $100,000 per year: driving a truck that's the size of an
average house. The truck is 30 feet wide, 30 feet high and 50 feet
long. We are encouraged to fret about these monsters tearing up the
landscape. I just thought how cool it would be to drive one. Surely the
ability to organise such a huge operation you need to shift about two
tonnes of oil sand to get one barrel of oil, and yet the area produces
1.3million barrels per day is worthy of a little awe?
Dirty Oil claims that oil-sand extraction is damaging the health of
local people. Down river in the town of Fort Chipewyan, Dr John
O'Connor claims that he has seen an extraordinarily high number of rare
cancers in a community of indigenous people who rely on fishing for
food. However, far from investigating his claims so the film tells us
the health authorities have brought a case against him for causing
'undue alarm'. The film suggests this is a case of the little man being
stomped on by the big corporation. So depressed is Dr O'Connor by these
proceedings that he eventually leaves the area and returns to Nova
Scotia, broken by a big conspiracy against a whistle-blower.
The big claim of the film is right there in the title: this is 'dirty
oil'. The extraction process requires a lot of energy from natural gas,
which means that the whole process produces three times as many
greenhouse gas emissions as conventional oil production. However, some
perspective is required. The majority of carbon emissions involved with
creating and using petroleum products comes from burning them in
vehicle engines. Taking that into account, petrol derived from oil
sands in Canada produces only 15 per cent more carbon emissions than
petrol from conventional sources.
Even if we accept the wilder claims about what climate change will mean
for humanity, the answer is surely to move to an economy based on low-
carbon technologies, not to fret about particular sources of fuel.
Alberta's oil boom will end when we no longer need the oil. That means
developing forms of transport that use electricity not oil, and power
sources like wind, solar, geothermal and most importantly nuclear.
These technologies could have benefits that go well beyond reducing
carbon emissions. But they need time to mature and be rolled out. We
need economic growth to pay for these things and keeping the oil
flowing is crucial to that.
While Dirty Oil suggests that we shift to renewable energy sources, it
also provides a childish view of the relationship between big business
and the rest of society. This is 'big people picking on little people
and assuming that they can get away with it', says a spokesperson for
the green group the Natural Resources Defense Council. The film also
suggests that it is somehow our individual greed which, by creating
demand for this 'dirty' oil, is screwing up the planet. But there's
nothing wrong with wanting to be better off; the whole world should
enjoy the living standards of the average American. Cheap, reliable
energy is absolutely essential for that. Alberta's oil boom is set to
continue for many years to come.
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