Desmond Tutu calls Alberta oilsands ‘filth’

Desmond Tutu calls Alberta oilsands ‘filth’

South African archbishop has harsh criticism of industry during visit to Fort McMurray.

Archbishop Desmond Tutu gives the keynote address during a conference on oilsands development and treaty rights in Fort McMurray, Alta., on Saturday.<br /><br /><br /><br />

JASON FRANSON / THE CANADIAN PRESS

Archbishop Desmond Tutu gives the keynote address during a conference on oilsands development and treaty rights in Fort McMurray, Alta., on Saturday.

FORT MCMURRAY, ALTA.—A brief helicopter tour of the oilsands Saturday wasn’t enough to shake Archbishop Desmond Tutu’s conviction that the industry is doing massive harm to both the climate and the environment.

“It is important that we do something about the horrendous effects and impacts on the only world we have,” he said after the brief Suncor-sponsored flight that took him over part of the company’s operations.

Earlier that day, Tutu’s judgment of Alberta’s oilsands had been harsh.

“The fact that this filth is being created now, when the link between carbon emissions and global warming is so obvious, reflects negligence and greed,” Tutu told more than 200 rapt attendees at a conference on oilsands development and treaty rights in Fort McMurray.

“Oilsands development not only devastates our shared climate, it is also stripping away the rights of First Nations and affected communities to protect their children, land and water from being poisoned.”

More: http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2014/05/31/desmond_tutu_calls_alberta_oilsands_filth.html[/embed]

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