Is Canadian oil ethical?

tar sand Pictures, Images and Photos
Canada’s oil exports are a source of opportunity for Canadians, as well as, oil importing countries. The oil coming out of Canada is from the tar sands of Alberta which is an unconventional source for the commodity. Inherent to this source of oil, it is a little more pollutive to the environment to extract it than the conventional sources of oil which is more common in other oil producing nations. This relative increase in pollution that Canada’s oil generates versus other nations is causing some activists in the U.S. to lobby the government to limit how much oil they import from Canada because they deem it unethical. These activist groups prefer the U.S. import its oil from countries with conventional sources (most other countries fall into that category).

However, these activists are not looking at the full picture. A recent study by the Fraser Institute (click here to read it) concluded that Canada’s oil is actually far more ethical overall than every other major oil producer. Sure, the pollution may be a little higher, but Canada and Norway are the only net exporters of oil that have complete freedoms and rights for its people (the U.S. doesn’t count because they are a net importer of oil). This means that by using other countries for oil, the U.S. will be supporting discrimination, oppression and dictatorships.

Being ethical is much more than how much pollution you create. Being ethical should be looked at in every aspect. By buying oil from countries like Saudi Arabia, Russia or Venezuela when you could buy from Canada, it is very unethical because you are supporting human rights violators that will only get stronger and more able to further oppress their people. The activists in the U.S. should start thinking about this issue a little more in depth because they are doing more harm than good for their cause.