Contrary to Mr. Wedgewood (Dec. 5) the pipeline protests do not miss the point.
The Northern Gateway Pipeline would not be a great boon to the Canadian economy.
Yes, there will be jobs in the oil sands as a result, and some construction jobs, a few jobs at the port and there will be royalties.
When we look at the idea of the net benefit to the average Canadian the picture looks different.
If Canadian bitumen goes on the market at world prices the increase in energy costs domestically will soon outstrip those gains, never mind the environmental and social costs.
And when we look at who really stands to gain from this it’s oil producers and their shareholders, the majority of which are foreign nationals who could care less whether we have health care, pensions and education.
Let us not confuse what is good for transnational corporations with what is good for Canada.
The oil sands will be developed though possibly not as quickly without that pipeline.
But if it’s jobs and our country’s well being we are concerned with then let them build more upgraders and refineries in Alberta and Saskatchewan where the bitumen and heavy oil is. Canada imports 50 per cent of its petroleum.
Why not supply ourselves first?
But most of all we need to get over the idea promoted by those transnationals and the Harper government that extracting and shipping our resources offshore without any value added is good for most Canadians. It isn’t.