Red Leaf’s Controversial Utah Oil Shale Project Challenged

(Reposted from the Grand Canyon Trust)

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An aerial view of Red Leaf Resources’ Utah oil shale facility. | Photo courtesy Taylor McKinnon (Grand Canyon Trust) and Bruce Gordon (Ecoflight)

For Immediate Release, January 22, 2014

Contact:
Rob Dubuc, Western Resource Advocate, (801) 487-9911
John Weisheit, Living Rivers, (435) 259-1063
Taylor McKinnon, Grand Canyon Trust, (801) 300-2414
Shelley Silbert, Great Old Broads for Wilderness, (970) 385-9577
Tim Wagner, Sierra Club, (801) 502-5450

Controversial Utah Oil Shale Project Challenged

38,000 Public Comments Opposed Plan Threatening Aquifers, Seeps and Springs

SALT LAKE CITY— Oil shale strip mining atop Utah’s Book Cliffs is being challenged by conservation groups. The challenge is a “request for agency action” filed Tuesday, over the ground water discharge permit approved by the Utah Department of Water Quality. The permit, which authorizes Red Leaf Resources to test an oil shale mining facility, lacks measures to prevent or detect surface or groundwater pollution, in violation of state law. More than 38,000 public comments were sent to the Department opposing an earlier draft of the flawed plan.

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Nov. 8 & 9: Tar Sands Discussions in Grand Junction

Junction

Join the Utah Tar Sands Resistance in Grand Junction and Silt, Colorado, November 8th and 9th for a community discussion tar sands and oil shale extraction in the Colorado Plateau.

Friday, November 8th in Grand Junction, CO:
12PM- Wraps on Main (150 W Main Street)
7PM – Center for Independence (740 Gunnison Avenue)

Saturday, November 9th in Silt, CO:
4:30PM – Silt Library (680 Home Ave)

In Utah, tar sands mining could soon begin–for the first time in the U.S.–and the tar-like oil would be refined in North Salt Lake. This, however, does not make this Utah’s battle alone. US Oil Sands, a Canadian Company, currently has a test pit just minutes from the Colorado border, and the devastation projects such as this will wreak on the lands, air, water, wildlife, and communities of the Colorado Plateau effect us all.

While this first project lays on state land, the BLM has also designated 800,000 acres across Utah, Colorado and Wyoming for tar sands and oil shale extraction.

Mining, shipping & refining tar sands in the region would harm our air, and our health, even more than refining regular crude, making it a major climate justice issue. Join us to work on creating SOLUTIONS to this human health nightmare, while forging a resilient community that’s empowered to take action!

(Join the Facebook Event)

Photo tour: Join us to visit what Enefit oil shale mining would destroy first

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Tar sands and oil shale development are crucial accelerants to climate catastrophe and the severe harm brought to so many, but a threat of harm to every living thing on the planet. The chain of destruction starts at the extraction process on precious and beautiful land south of Vernal.

On October 25-27, we will be visiting the land that the state-owned corporation of Estonia plans to destroy for a few hours fuel.

Sign up for our newsletter to get all the updates on the camping trip as details finalize.

See a photo tour of the area after the jump, so click more here –> Continue reading

Oct. 25-27: Stop Enefit! No Oil Shale Campout

Stop Enefit

We with the Utah Tar Sands Resistance aren’t all about tar sands, you know. Eastern Utah has become a sacrifice zone for the Western United States in terms of destructive, toxic fuel extraction, and we’re standing up to say “No!” to extreme energies in the Uintah Basin–and that includes oil shale.

Enefit, an Estonian government-owned company with some half-baked ideas about mining for oil shale in Eastern Utah (in order to produce Kerogen), is bringing the usual lines about ” minimizing land disturbance,” ” reclamation” of the land,  and their “commitment to environmental stewardship.”

Bullshit.

By their very nature, extractive processes such as Enefit’s are highly destructive, leaving behind a wasteland, and polluting the water and air. Even if we believed Enefit’s lies, the state of Utah requires little to no oversight of oil & gas projects, and has recently allowed US Oil Sands to start tar sands mining without requiring a pollution permit or water monitoring. Why should the Enefit project be any different in a state with a “Mine, Baby, Mine!” mentality?

Oil shale mining in Estonia has left the Baltic country with a population high in respiratory disease, and according to a recent report from KSL News, “There are still vast piles of waste in Estonia, and dozens of square miles remain torn up by strip-mining. There used to be severe air pollution and water quality problems.”

Recently, Shell announced that they were abandoning their own oil shale project in the Western Slopes of Colorado, after wasting over $30 million of dollars in “exploration.” They following Chevron in fleeing the Colorado Plateau because oil shale development is EXPENSIVE, RISKY and UNRELIABLE.

Based on early tests, folks in Estonia are even say that Enefit’s Utah project is “not promising” and are worried that it could cost them $100 million.

We don’t want Utah to become a wasteland. Our air, water, and land are too precious to squander on speculative and experimental mining practices.

Join us as we say “NO!” to oil shale, and get ready to STOP ENEFIT!

(Please email us at utahtarsandsresistance@gmail.com for directions, and join the Facebook event for updates)

Peaceful Uprising/OccupySaltLake/Utah Tar Sands Resistence Flash Mob S.I.T.L.A Office

Peaceful Uprising along with Utah Tar Sands Resistance & Occupy SLC present guerrilla street theater at SITLA – Utah State Institutional Trust Lands Administration – in protest of SITLA’s promotion of tar sands development in Utah.

Citizens’ Public Hearing against Tar Sands at SITLA Offices, Salt Lake City

Peaceful Uprising along with Utah Tar Sands Resistance & Occupy SLC present guerrilla street theater at SITLA – Utah State Institutional Trust Lands Administration – in protest of SITLA’s promotion of tar sands development in Utah.

This is the first enactment of PeaceUp’s quarterly Community Audits for 2012 . The community audit model seeks to identify and take action toward both hot spots (sources of injustice to protest) and cool spots (sources of hope to support). In addition to the Tar Sands “hot spot” at SITLA, PeaceUp will also hold a “cool spot” action in solidarity with those fighting for human rights. Check out our blog post to read how we’ve connected the dots between tar sands and human rights (Hint: it has to do with the economy)

Tar Sands in the United States

by Ben Jervey (reposted from DesmogBlog)

Tar-sands-oil-canada-2Think that that dirtiest oil on the planet is only found up in Alberta? You might be surprised then to hear that there are tar sands deposits in Colorado, Utah and Wyoming, much of which are on public lands.

While none of the American tar sands deposits are actively being developed yet, energy companies are frantically working to raise funds, secure approvals, and start extracting.

To help you better understand the state of tar sands development in the U.S., here’s a primer. Continue reading