Pipelines: the Flow of Climate Change

by mplescia on September 18, 2017 - 1:40pm

One of the most predominant obstacles and barriers to reducing human impact on climate change is pipelines. In fact, here are some of the facts on the current situation concerning these far reaching petrol transport tubes.


First of all, pipelines greatly threaten our capacity to protect the environment and therefore to mitigate the effects of climate change due to spills that tend to occur in very large amounts at a time. For instance, according to Larry West, author of the article entitled Environmental Consequences of Oil Spills, when oil slicks from large oil spills wash into forests or wetlands, it can damage plants, which in turn makes the whole area unsuitable as wildlife habitat. In simple terms, oil spills can lead to the destruction of ecosystems, which reduces the environment’s capacity to absorb human related greenhouse gasses and worsens our impact on global warming and climate change.


Second of all, another problem concerning the subject is the fact that we, Canadians, invest way too much money into the transportation of natural gas and bitumen via pipelines to even consider reducing the amount that we ship between provinces and to the U.S. Because pipelines have already cost us so much to invest in (especially when it comes to infrastructure), it would simply be a waste of money and effort to not put them to good use. Considering our investment in infrastructure, we can only expect our bitumen exportations to increase and not the other way around.

In conclusion, pipelines pose a great threat towards reducing the human impact on climate change because they cause massive oil spills that destroy the environment and the infrastructure related to them has already cost us so much to build that we must put them to good use. 






Marco Plescia, Kazuki Gonzalez-Adachi, Danyyil Bun

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