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Garth Lenz 談石油真正的代價

Garth Lenz: The true cost of oil

 

Photo of three lions hunting on the Serengeti.

講者:Garth Lenz

2011年11月演講,2012年2月在TEDxVictoria上線

 

翻譯:洪曉慧

編輯:朱學恆

簡繁轉換:洪曉慧

後製:洪曉慧

字幕影片後制:謝旻均

 

影片請按此下載

MAC及手持裝置版本請按此下載

閱讀中文字幕純文字版本

 

關於這場演講

環境遭受破壞的真實面貌為何?在TEDxVictoria中,攝影師Garth Lenz分享了一些令人震驚的照片-包括阿爾伯塔省油砂礦開採計畫,及美麗、重要且飽受威脅生態系統。(攝於TEDxVictoria)

 

關於Garth Lenz

Garth Lenz的巡迴攝影展「石油真正的代價」,在對抗阿爾伯塔省油砂礦開採行動中起了關鍵作用。

 

為什麼要聽他演講

Garth Lenz的攝影作品捕捉到原始景觀遭受工業計畫威脅時的真實面貌。攝影記者的工作為他贏得法國巴黎PX3國際攝影大賽首獎及國際攝影大獎。他也是國際保育攝影師聯盟會員。他以阿爾伯塔省油砂礦為主題的攝影個展「石油真正的代價」於2011年首次展出。

 

「與Garth視覺風格同樣重要的是他選擇關注的主題,對複雜環境問題的瞭解使他創造出貼切且重要的影像。」

-Melissa Ryan,《自然保育協會雜誌》

 

Garth Lenz的英語網上資料

Home: Garthlenz.com

Twitter: @photoGarth

Facebook: Garth Lenz

The True Cost of Oil: Garthlenz.com

 

[TED科技‧娛樂‧設計]

已有中譯字幕的TED影片目錄(繁體)(簡體)。請注意繁簡目錄是不一樣的。

 

Garth Lenz 談石油真正的代價

 

世上最大、最具破壞性的環境及工業計畫,發生於世上最大、保存最完整的森林當中-加拿大北方森林。它橫跨加拿大北部的拉布拉多省,為現存最大的野生馴鹿群家園-喬治河馴鹿群,數量大約40萬隻。不幸的是,我前往當地時,並未見到任何一隻,但有鹿角為證。

 

縱觀整個北方森林,我們幸運地擁有豐富的濕地資源。濕地是全球瀕臨最嚴重危機的生態系統之一。它們是十分重要的生態系統,它們能淨化空氣和水源,吸收大量溫室氣體,它們是許多物種的家園。北方森林也是北美所發現的800種鳥類中,半數為了撫育後代而北遷的鳥類家園。

 

在安大略省,北方森林向南延伸,直抵蘇必利爾湖北岸。這片美不勝收的北方森林是加拿大歷史中某些著名藝術作品的靈感源泉,七人畫派深受這片景觀影響。因此,北方森林不僅是自然遺產的重要組成,也是文化遺產的重要組成。

 

這是曼尼托巴省溫尼伯湖東岸景觀,它是聯合國教科文組織新列的世界文化遺產。橫跨北方森林的薩克其萬省擁有一些著名湖泊,形成令人嘆為觀止的河流及湖泊網路-和平河、阿薩巴斯卡河、邱吉爾河、馬更些河-這是每位學齡兒童都讀過的知識。對旅客和獵人來說,這些網路是具有歷史意義的路線。北加拿大第一位非原住民探險者,仿效原住民的做法,使用獨木舟探索貿易路線,即進行毛皮交易的西北航道。

 

北方是被凍土帶包圍的北方森林,位於下方的育空省擁有這座壯觀的峽谷-墓碑谷。墓碑谷是豪豬馴鹿(Porcupine caribou herd)的家園。你或許聽說過,豪豬馴鹿的繁殖地位於北極國家野生動物保護區。事實上,這片渡冬地亦十分重要,卻未受到保護,它面臨天然氣及礦物開採的潛在危機。

 

位於卑詩省的北方森林西部邊界是海岸山脈,這座山脈的另一側是世上現存最大的溫帶雨林-大熊雨林,我們稍後會做詳細討論。

 

縱觀整個北方森林,它是眾多原住民族群薈萃之地,擁有豐富多樣的文化。我認為大多族群依然保有其固有文化的原因之一-例如母語、歌曲、舞蹈、傳統-我認為部分原因在於,這片將近95%生態系統尚未遭受破壞的土地地處偏遠、幅員廣大且依舊保持原始面貌。我認為,尤其是目前,我們明白人類身處環境危機時代,我們可從於這片生態系統中生活了1萬多年的族群身上學到許多東西。

 

這片生態系統蘊含的核心價值,與我們目前追求的目標大相逕庭,我認為這正是令身為加拿大人的我們引以為傲的核心價值。這是阿爾伯塔省的油砂礦,它是除了沙烏地阿拉伯之外,世上石油蘊藏量最豐富的地區。在北方森林和北阿爾伯塔省濕地下方,蘊藏著大量粘稠、似焦油的瀝青,挖掘及開採這些礦脈的舉動,對地球造成史無前例的破壞。

 

我試著說明這些破壞的規模。以圖中的卡車為例,它是同類卡車中最大的一種,承載量達400噸的砂石車,規格為45英呎長、35英呎寬、25英呎高。如果站在那輛卡車旁,我的頭部大約只到黃色輪框蓋底部。在這輛卡車體積範圍內,你可輕易建造一棟面積3000平方英呎、兩層樓高的房子,我曾經計算過。因此,與其將它視為一輛卡車,不如將它視為一棟面積3000平方英呎的房子,一棟不小的房子。這些卡車在這片區域中來回奔馳,從底部到頂端。想像一下這片區域的大小,這僅是礦場的一小部分。

 

現在,你可將同樣想法運用到這片區域,如圖所示-當然,當你將視線拉遠,這些卡車彷彿圖中的小點。同樣地,想像一下這片區域佔整個礦場多大部分?相當於幅員廣大的都會區,或許比維多利亞城大得多。這只是眾多礦場之一。目前共有10個礦場,這只是其中一個礦場的一部分,目前大約有四、五十個礦場正進行審核。事實上,不曾有任何油砂礦無法通過審核,因此基本上只是核章問題。

 

另一種開採方式叫做「就地鑽探」,如圖所示。大量水經高溫加熱後泵入地底,通過管線、震測線、鑽探途徑及壓縮站組成的龐大網路,儘管看起來或許不像露天採礦場那麼令人怵目驚心,但以某種程度來說,卻造成更大破壞。它使更大片原野受到影響、支離破碎,導致關鍵物種減少90%,例如北美馴鹿和灰熊,消耗更多能源及水源,產生至少與前者相當的溫室氣體,因此就地鑽探對生態的破壞至少與露天採礦不相上下。

 

藉由以上兩種方式開採的原油,比以其他方式開採的原油排放更多溫室氣體,這正是它被稱為世上最髒油類的原因之一,也是使它成為加拿大最大、增長最迅速的碳排放源頭的原因之一,更是使加拿大個人排碳量名列世界第三的原因之一。那些殘渣池是世上最大的毒性蓄水池。油砂-或者我該稱它為瀝青砂-「油砂」是公關部門創造的詞彙,使石油公司不至於像是推廣某種彷彿瀝青般黏稠的物質,或世上最髒的油,因此他們決定稱它為油砂。瀝青砂的生產過程比其他油類消耗更多水,生產一桶原油需使用三至五桶水。遭受污染的水進入殘渣池-世上最大的毒性蓄水池。

 

SemCrude只是其中一間取得執照的公司,在他們擁有的其中一個殘渣池中,每日倒入25萬噸毒性黏稠物,創造出有史以來最大的毒性蓄水池。目前為止,其中的毒性物質足以覆蓋伊利湖面一呎深。殘渣池的面積可達9000英畝,相當於三分之二個曼哈頓島,大約從曼哈頓南端的華爾街到第120街。因此,這確實-這是其中較大的殘渣池之一,大約相當於-我不確定-半個曼哈頓島。你可由之前的演講內容得知,相對於十個礦場來說,這只是一小部分,其他四、五十個礦場很快就會獲得批准。

 

當然,這些殘渣池-確實,你無法從外太空看見許多殘渣池,但你可以看見這些,因此我們或許不該稱它為「池」。這些大型毒性廢料池並未裝設防護措施,散佈於阿薩巴斯卡河沿岸。阿薩巴斯卡河下游為原住民社區,奇普懷恩堡有800位居民,食物鏈中含有毒性物質,已經科學證實。食物鏈中含有瀝青砂這種毒性物質,導致當地罹癌率比加拿大其他地區高十倍。

 

儘管如此,人們需要生存,需仰賴食物維生,空運到這片遙遠北方原住民社區的天價食物和當地的高失業率,使當地物產成了賴以為生的必需品。幾年前,我向原住民借了一艘船,他說,「當你沿河航行時,千萬別吃魚,那是致癌物。」然而,在那名男子家門口,我看見四條魚,他必須藉此養家糊口,身為父母的我,無法想像這對心靈的影響。這正是我們目前所做的事。

 

北方森林或許亦是對抗全球暖化及氣候變遷的最佳防線。北方森林吸收的排碳量勝於任何現存的生態系統,無疑是十分重要的生態環境。但我們所做的是,將溫室氣體吸收率最大的環境-每英畝北方森林吸收的溫室氣體比熱帶雨林多兩倍-我們所做的是,摧毀這個碳匯(具有吸收二氧化碳功能的環境),將它轉變成碳彈,將它轉變成史上最大的工業項目,生產溫室氣體排放量最大的高碳油類,這就是我們在世上第二大石油蘊藏地所做的事。

 

這就是為何原本身為環保英雄的加拿大-我們是第一批簽署京都議定書的國家之一。現在我國在歐盟及華盛頓特區派駐全職說客,以貿易戰爭為要脅,當這些國家希望立法限制高碳燃料進口、討論溫室氣體排放等相關議題時,在國際會議中,無論在哥本哈根或坎昆,在討論氣候變遷議題的國際會議中,我們是榮獲「化石獎」(頒給破壞國際氣候變化談判的國家)的國家,成為談判進展的最大阻礙。

 

河流下游70英哩處是世上最大的淡水三角洲,和平-阿薩巴斯卡三角洲。它是四條候鳥遷徙路線唯一交會點,這是對全球來說具有重要意義的濕地,或許是世上最大的濕地。它是北美半數遷往此處的鳥類物種棲息地,也是世上最大野牛群最後的避難所,此外,當然也是許多其他物種的重要棲息地。但它也深受來自阿薩巴斯卡河的大量水流威脅。它灌溉這片濕地,同時帶來世上最大的露天毒性蓄水池流出的大量毒性物質,進入下游所有物種的食品鏈中。

 

整個情況如此糟糕,而且將會每況愈下。以上是我們目前所知的基礎設施,這是預定於2015年完成的施工計畫。你可以看見圖中的油砂輸送系統(Keystone Pipeline),它將瀝青砂原料運往墨西哥灣沿岸,管線穿越北美及美國農業腹地,確保世上最髒的燃料由美國消費,對美國擁有永續潔淨能源的未來造成極大阻礙。

 

圖中有條直抵馬更些谷的路線,將設置天然氣運輸管線,從波弗特海穿越世上第三大水域中心,及世上唯一保有95%完整生態的地區。伴隨著管線所建設的產業道路將永遠改變這片令人驚艷、世上稀有的原野。

 

因此,大熊雨林就在山丘那頭,離這片擁有百年樹齡的乾燥北方森林只有數哩。樹幹周長大約10英吋(原文是across,似乎該翻成樹幹直徑,但以圖片來看似乎太誇張了)。不久後,這片擁有豐富雨水、千年樹齡及樹幹周長20英呎的濱海溫帶雨林,將成為完全不同的生態系統。大熊雨林一向被認為是世上最大的濱海溫帶雨林生態系統,擁有世上密度最高、最具標誌性的瀕危物種。然而,其中一項提案是-當然,建造輸油管,供巨型油輪裝載原油,比Exxon Valdez(曾經造成嚴重漏油事故的油輪)大10倍的油輪,通過世上某些最難航行的水域,幾年前,卑詩公司的渡輪才在此擱淺。若其中一艘瀝青砂油輪,裝載容量為Exxon Valdez油輪10倍的髒油,最後撞上岩石沉沒,將導致史上最嚴重的生態災難。

 

這是預定於2030年完成的計畫,提案內容是,使髒油產量提高將近四倍,這將使面積相當於佛羅里達州的區域工業化,這種做法將使我們失去大部分碳匯,使它成為溫室氣體排放量最大的油類產地。世上不需要更多油砂礦,世上不需要更多輸油管,滿足我們對化石燃料的依賴,世上當然不需要與日俱增的大型毒性蓄水池,進一步威脅下游社區。讓我們面對這個事實:在全球暖化及氣候變遷時代,我們都活在污染下游。

 

我們需要的是-大家都必須採取行動,確保加拿大珍惜國內龐大的淡水資源。我們必須保護這些濕地和森林,它是對抗全球暖化最佳、最有利、最重要的防線。我們不能將這枚碳彈釋放到大氣中,我們必須團結一致,向油砂說不。我們可以做到這一點,遍布於全球的龐大網路社群正致力於制止這項計劃。

 

我認為這不僅是加拿大本身該做的決定,在座每位聽眾、每位加拿大國民、每位聆聽這場演講的人都該貢獻心力。我認為這是一項責任,因為我們的所作所為將改變人類歷史,為人類生存的可能性帶來希望,為下一代的生存帶來希望,使他們擁有美好未來。

 

北方森林提供了不可思議的恩賜和機會,保存了對抗全球暖化的最佳防禦工具,但我們或許會讓它消失無蹤。瀝青砂可能造成的威脅,不僅是北方森林大部分區域,也將危及一些弱勢者的生命和健康,危及對人類貢獻良多的原住民社區。

 

瀝青砂將摧毀阿薩巴斯卡三角洲,它或許是世上最大、最壯觀的淡水三角洲;它將摧毀大熊雨林-世上最大的溫帶雨林;它可能對北美農業腹地的未來造成巨大影響。

 

我希望在座各位,如果這場演講令你動容,請加入逐漸壯大的國際社群行列,督促加拿大盡一己之責,說服加拿大再次成為對抗氣候變化的鬥士,而非導致氣候變化的罪魁禍首。向瀝青砂說不,迎向擁有潔淨能源的未來。十分感謝。

 

(掌聲)

 

以下為系統擷取之英文原文

About the talk
What does environmental devastation actually look like? At TEDxVictoria, photographer Garth Lenz shares shocking photos of the Alberta Tar Sands mining project -- and the beautiful (and vital) ecosystems under threat. (Filmed at TEDxVictoria.)
 
About the speaker
Garth Lenz’ touring exhibition, “The True Cost of Oil”, has played a major part in the fight against Alberta Tar Sands Mining. Full bio »
 
About the transcript

All across the boreal, we're blessed with this incredible abundance of wetlands. Wetlands globally are one of the most endangered ecosystems. They're absolutely critical ecosystems, they clean air, they clean water, they sequester large amounts of greenhouse gases, and they're home to a huge diversity of species. In the boreal, they are also the home where almost 50 percent of the 800 bird species found in North America migrate north to breed and raise their young.

In Ontario, the boreal marches down south to the north shore of Lake Superior. And these incredibly beautiful boreal forests were the inspiration for some of the most famous art in Canadian history, the Group of Seven were very inspired by this landscape, and so the boreal is not just a really key part of our natural heritage, but also an important part of our cultural heritage.

In Manitoba, this is an image from the east side of Lake Winnipeg, and this is the home of the newly designated UNESCO Cultural Heritage site. In Saskatchewan, as across all of the boreal, home to some of our most famous rivers, an incredible network of rivers and lakesthat every school-age child learns about, the Peace, the Athabasca, the Churchill here, the Mackenzie, and these networks were the historical routes for the voyageur and the coureur des bois, the first non-Aboriginal explorers of northern Canada that, taking from the First Nations people, used canoes and paddled to explore for a trade route, a Northwest Passage for the fur trade.

In the North, the boreal is bordered by the tundra, and just below that, in Yukon, we have this incredible valley, the Tombstone Valley. And the Tombstone Valley is home to the Porcupine caribou herd. Now you've probably heard about the Porcupine caribou herd in the context of its breeding ground in Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. Well, the wintering ground is also critical and it also is not protected, and is potentially, could be potentially, exploitedfor gas and mineral rights.

The western border of the boreal in British Columbia is marked by the Coast Mountains, and on the other side of those mountains is the greatest remaining temperate rainforest in the world, the Great Bear Rainforest, and we'll discuss that in a few minutes in a bit more detail.

All across the boreal, it's home for a huge incredible range of indigenous peoples, and a rich and varied culture. And I think that one of the reasons why so many of these groups have retained a link to the past, know their native languages, the songs, the dances, the traditions, I think part of that reason is because of the remoteness, the span and the wilderness of this almost 95 percent intact ecosystem. And I think particularly now, as we see ourselves in a time of environmental crisis, we can learn so much from these peoplewho have lived so sustainably in this ecosystem for over 10,000 years.

In the heart of this ecosystem is the very antithesis of all of these values that we've been talking about, and I think these are some of the core values that make us proud to be Canadians. This is the Alberta tar sands, the largest oil reserves on the planet outside of Saudi Arabia. Trapped underneath the boreal forest and wetlands of northern Alberta are these vast reserves of this sticky, tar-like bitumen. And the mining and the exploitation of that is creating devastation on a scale that the planet has never seen before.

I want to try to convey some sort of a sense of the size of this. If you look at that truck there, it is the largest truck of its kind of the planet. It is a 400-ton-capacity dump truck and its dimensions are 45 feet long by 35 feet wide and 25 feet high. If I stand beside that truck,my head comes to around the bottom of the yellow part of that hubcap. Within the dimensions of that truck, you could build a 3,000-square-foot two-story home quite easily. I did the math. So instead of thinking of that as a truck, think of that as a 3,000-square-foot home. That's not a bad size home. And line those trucks/homes back and forth across there from the bottom all the way to the top. And then think of how large that very small section of one mine is.

Now, you can apply that same kind of thinking here as well. Now, here you see -- of course, as you go further on, these trucks become like a pixel. Again, imagine those all back and forth there. How large is that one portion of a mine? That would be a huge, vast metropolitan area, probably much larger than the city of Victoria. And this is just one of a number of mines, 10 mines so far right now. This is one section of one mining complex, and there are about another 40 or 50 in the approval process. No tar sands mine has actually ever been denied approval, so it is essentially a rubber stamp.

The other method of extraction is what's called the in-situ. And here, massive amounts of water are super-heated and pumped through the ground, through these vasts networks of pipelines, seismic lines, drill paths, compressor stations. And even though this looks maybe not quite as repugnant as the mines, it's even more damaging in some ways. It impacts and fragments a larger part of the wilderness, where there is 90 percent reduction of key species, like woodland caribou and grizzly bears, and it consumes even more energy, more water, and produces at least as much greenhouse gas. So these in-situ developments are at least as ecologically damaging as the mines.

The oil produced from either method produces more greenhouse gas emissions than any other oil. This is one of the reasons why it's called the world's dirtiest oil. It's also one of the reasons why it is the largest and fastest-growing single source of carbon in Canada, and it is also a reason why Canada is now number three in terms of producing carbon per person.The tailings ponds are the largest toxic impoundments on the planet. Oil sands -- or rather I should say tar sands -- "oil sands" is a P.R.-created term so that the oil companies wouldn't be trying to promote something that sounds like a sticky tar-like substance that's the world's dirtiest oil. So they decided to call it oil sands. The tar sands consume more water than any other oil process, three to five barrels of water are taken, polluted and then returned into tailings ponds, the largest toxic impoundments on the planet.

SemCrude, just one of the licensees, in just one of their tailings ponds, dumps 250,000 tons of this toxic gunk every single day. That's creating the largest toxic impoundments in the history of the planet. So far, this is enough toxin to cover the face of Lake Eerie a foot deep.And the tailings ponds range in size up to 9,000 acres. That's two-thirds the size of the entire island of Manhattan. That's like from Wall Street at the southern edge of Manhattanup to maybe 120th Street. So this is an absolutely -- this is one of the larger tailings ponds.This might be, what? I don't know, half the size of Manhattan. And you can see in the context, it's just a relatively small section of one of 10 mining complexes and another 40 to 50 on stream to be approved soon.

And of course, these tailings ponds -- well, you can't see many ponds from outer space and you can see these, so maybe we should stop calling them ponds -- these massive toxic wastelands are built unlined and on the banks of the Athabasca River. And the Athabasca River drains downstream to a range of Aboriginal communities. In Fort Chippewa, the 800 people there, are finding toxins in the food chain, this has been scientifically proven. The tar sands toxins are in the food chain, and this is causing cancer rates up to 10 times what they are in the rest of Canada.

In spite of that, people have to live, have to eat this food in order to survive. The incredibly high price of flying food into these remote Northern Aboriginal communities and the high rate of unemployment makes this an absolute necessity for survival. And not that many years ago, I was lent a boat by a First Nations man. And he said, "When you go out on the river,do not under any circumstances eat the fish. It's carcinogenic." And yet, on the front porch of that man's cabin, I saw four fish. He had to feed his family to survive. And as a parent, I just can't imagine what that does to your soul. And that's what we're doing.

The boreal forest is also perhaps our best defense against global warming and climate change. The boreal forest sequesters more carbon than any other terrestrial ecosystem.And this is absolutely key. So what we're doing is, we're taking the most concentrated greenhouse gas sink, twice as much greenhouse gases are sequestered in the boreal per acre than the tropical rainforests. And what we're doing is we're destroying this carbon sink, turning it into a carbon bomb. And we're replacing that with the largest industrial project in the history of the world, which is producing the most high-carbon greenhouse gas emitting oil in the world. And we're doing this on the second largest oil reserves on the planet.

This is one of the reasons why Canada, originally a climate change hero -- we were one of the first signatories of the Kyoto Accord. Now we're the country that has full-time lobbyistsin the European Union and Washington, D.C. threatening trade wars when these countriestalk about wanting to bring in positive legislation to limit the import of high-carbon fuels, of greenhouse gas emissions, anything like this, at international conferences, whether they're in Copenhagen or Cancun, international conferences on climate change, we're the country that gets the dinosaur award every single day as being the biggest obstacle to progress on this issue.

Just 70 miles downstream is the world's largest freshwater delta, the Peace-Athabasca Delta, the only one at the juncture of all four migratory flyways. This is a globally significant wetland, perhaps the greatest on the planet. Incredible habitat for half the bird species you find in North America, migrating here. And also the last refuge for the largest herd of wild bison, and also, of course, critical habitat for another whole range of other species. But it too is being threatened by the massive amount of water being drawn from the Athabasca,which feeds these wetlands, and also the incredible toxic burden of the largest toxic unlined impoundments on the planet, which are leaching in to the food chain for all the species downstream.

So as bad as all that is, things are going to get much worse, much, much worse. This is the infrastructure as we see it about now. This is what's planned for 2015. And you can see here the Keystone Pipeline, which would take tar sands raw down to the Gulf Coast,punching a pipeline through the heart, the agricultural heart of North America, of the United States, and securing the contract with the dirtiest fuel in the world by consumption of the United States, and promoting a huge disincentive to a sustainable clean energy future for America.

Here you see the route down the Mackenzie Valley. This would put a pipeline to take natural gas from the Beaufort Sea through the heart of the third largest watershed basin in the world, and the only one which is 95 percent intact. And building a pipeline with an industrial highway would change forever this incredible wilderness, which is a true rarity on the planet today.

So the Great Bear Rainforest is just over the hill there, within a few miles we go from thesedry boreal forests of 100-year-old trees, maybe 10 inches across, and soon we're in the coastal temperate rainforest, rain-drenched, 1,000-year-old trees, 20 feet across, a completely different ecosystem. And the Great Bear Rainforest is generally considered to be the largest coastal temperate rainforest ecosystem in the world. Some of the greatest densities of, some of the most iconic and threatened species on the planet, and yet there's a proposal, of course, to build a pipeline to take huge tankers, 10 times the size of the Exxon Valdez, through some of the most difficult to navigate waters in the world, where only just a few years ago, a B.C. ferry ran aground. When one of these tar sands tankers,carrying the dirtiest oil, 10 times as much as the Exxon Valdez, eventually hits a rock and goes down, we're going to have one of the worst ecological disasters this planet has ever seen.

And here we have the plan out to 2030. What they're proposing is an almost four-times increase in production, and that would industrialize an area the size of Florida. In doing so, we'll be removing a large part of our greatest carbon sink and replacing it with the most high greenhouse gas emission oil in the future. The world does not need any more tar mines. The world does not need any more pipelines to wed our addiction to fossil fuels. And the world certainly does not need the largest toxic impoundments to grow and multiply and further threaten the downstream communities. And let's face it, we all live downstream in an era of global warming and climate change.

What we need, is we all need to act to ensure that Canada respects the massive amounts of freshwater that we hold in this country. We need to ensure that these wetlands and forests that are our best and greatest and most critical defense against global warming are protected, and we are not releasing that carbon bomb into the atmosphere. And we need to all gather together and say no to the tar sands. And we can do that. There is a huge network all over the world fighting to stop this project.

And I quite simply think that this is not something that should be decided just in Canada.Everyone in this room, everyone across Canada, everyone listening to this presentation has a role to play and, I think, a responsibility. Because what we do here is going to change our history, it's going to color our possibility to survive, and for our children to survive and have a rich future.

We have an incredible gift in the boreal, an incredible opportunity to preserve our best defense against global warming, but we could let that slip away. The tar sands could threaten not just a large section of the boreal. It compromises the life and the health of some of our most underprivileged and vulnerable people, the Aboriginal communities that have so much to teach us. It could destroy the Athabasca Delta, the largest and possibly greatest freshwater delta in the planet. It could destroy the Great Bear Rainforest, the largest temperate rainforest in the world. And it could have huge impacts on the future of the agricultural heartland of North America.

I hope that you will all, if you've been moved by this presentation, join with the growing international community to get Canada to step up to its responsibilities, to convince Canada to go back to being a climate change champion instead of a climate change villain, and to say no to the tar sands, and yes to a clean energy future for all. Thank you so much.

 
 

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