A multi-media project of the Pulitzer Center for Crisis Reporting including photos, articles and podcasts about the Alberta tar sands and the devastating impact extraction is having on the environment.
Alberta contains about 170 billion barrels of reasonably accessible oil, the world’s third-largest supply after those of Saudi Arabia and Venezuela. The sea of crude sits underneath an Iowa-sized territory of rolling hills and valleys of peat bogs and forests of fir, polar and aspen. A valuation of more than a trillion of dollars has caused a stampede of investment from the big oil companies, including Shell, ExxonMobil, Sinopec, Chevron and ConocoPhillips. All of Canada’s top oil producers, while not large on the world stage, are also feasting on Alberta’s lucrative oil bounty.
Photo credit: Image by Alex MacLean. Canada, 2014