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Abrams reports: "The oil industry never wanted to people to get worked up about the tapping of Canada's tar sands. ... But a 2010 presentation released by Wikileaks shows just how desperate it was to keep to environmentalists off its back - and just how unsuccessful, three years later, it's been in doing so."

Documents show a Government attempt to crack down on Keystone Pipeline protesters. (illustration: istock)
Documents show a Government attempt to crack down on Keystone Pipeline protesters. (illustration: istock)

Wikileaks Reveals Failed Plans to Suppress Anti-Keystone Activists

By Lindsay Abrams, Salon

07 December 13


A 2010 presentation laid out strategies for dealing with environmentalists

he oil industry never wanted to people to get worked up about the tapping of Canada's tar sands. That much already went without saying. But a 2010 presentation released by Wikileaks shows just how desperate it was to keep to environmentalists off its back - and just how unsuccessful, three years later, it's been in doing so.

The presentation was prepared by Stratfor, a global intelligence firm based in Texas, for what appears to be Suncor Energy, Canada's largest oil sands producer. (While Suncor denies ever having commissioned or seen the presentation, the company's name is mentioned a total of 11 times throughout.) It breaks down nearly two dozen environmental organizations, including Greenpeace, the Sierra Club, the National Wildlife Federation, World Wildlife Fund and the Natural Resources Defense Council, into four basic categories: radicals, idealists , realists and opportunities and then sets out potential strategies for dealing with each, such as intentionally delaying negotiations or, as is proposed in this slide, ignoring them:

InsideClimateNews calls the presentation "the latest in a series of revelations that suggest energy companies-which for most of their history seemed unfazed by activists-have been looking for ways to dilute environmentalists' growing influence." National Journal calls it silly. But both agree that, as thousands of people "on both side of the border" have joined in protests against the tar sands, the oil industry's worst case scenario has come to pass. your social media marketing partner


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+15 # soularddave 2013-12-07 23:23
Tar Sands mining, refining, transportation, and final export and use are ALL negative touch points. There are multiple negatives associated with each element and campaigns can be waged against each "dirty" element of the diabolical corporatist scheme.

Those drawn to understand any particular negative aspect quickly learn of all the others and gain depth of understanding, then conviction and intensity that leads to earnest and widespread protest. That's why the momentum has spawned a concerted MOVEMENT against the pipeline. Indeed, the pipeline is recognized as THE KEYSTONE, without which, the whole project falls in on itself (like a masonry arch).

Yes, protesters and supporters can understand how the resources of the NSA can be brought to bear on organizing and specific protest actions, but since the fight is LOGICAL and HONORABLE, they won't be deterred. The question is how much government resources will be expended on containing the protests over such a wide area, particularly since there will be so little domestic benefit from the ill-advised project.
+11 # Eldon J. Bloedorn 2013-12-07 23:44
As cowardly as it sounds for the planet, the U.S. has already approved a trans U.S. Canada pipeline to tranport a distilate from the U.S. to Canada. The distilate will be mixed with the tar sands product to make it flow and pumped more easily in a pipeline. What pipeline? As horrible as it sounds, the answer is in the question.
+5 # Jim Young 2013-12-08 09:27
Seems they can only delay so long, stalling any real progress towards cleaner, more sustainable sources. I'd look very closely at their claims that this is anything but preparation to stretch out profits from dirty, dangerous, and environmentally catastrophic energy sources. They will claim the "waterless fracking in the Eagle-Ford play is "safer" for water resources, but I wouldn't take their word for it. Check the satellite images by entering "Oil People Road, Falls City, Texas" then expanding to see the density of wells. A more dramatic picture (but of well density much farther North is at:

An economic bubble-bursting argument (referenced in a comment on the previous link is at

Literature I received at the 2007 Shell Eco Marathon seemed to show Shell was far more interested in developing Hydrogen as a fuel back then (before we started seeing the accelerated damage inadequately predicted at the time).

It seems we should be transitioning faster than they wanted to, back before we realized the real rates of change. It seems pure greedy insanity to expand the use of dirty tech, while crippling the clean with subsidies that should have their priorities 180 degrees from where they are now.
+2 # AMLLLLL 2013-12-08 14:46
Are you referring to 'dil-bit? Not only is this mixture toxic, it must be heated as well to facilitate its travel. Diluted bitumen's corrosive effects will eat thru any steel, as evidenced by the notorious Enbridge TarSands spill in the Kalamazoo River in MI. 3 years on and NO progress cleaning up, since the technology doesn't exist. They have put a 'party napkin' down and declared it good as they surreptitiously keep making lame attempts at making it go away. It's a myth that the oil company pays the bill. It's paid for by you and me out of an emergency spill fund, and the US Gov't does this 'fine' sham to make it look good.
It's so apparent that this whole pipeline concept is economically disastrous; the only beneficiary would be the oil companies.
Obama left a loophole you could drive a pipeline through by saying his approval will turn on the climate effects of the KXL, which is a JUMBO-sized Enbridge.

If they left the Tar Sands like they take it out of the ground (consistency of cowplop)and send it by rail to port and to China as planned, wouldn't that save us water, pollution, disastrous environmental consequences and risk to our safety?
0 # Eldon J. Bloedorn 2013-12-08 20:02
Good post. A few weeks ago, I read about the new U.S. pipeline to Canada. Not sure who published the article. Maybe RSN. The article referred to a distilate and not by actual or code name.

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