Oil Sand in Alberta

1133 Words Feb 2nd, 2018 5 Pages
What are oil sands? Oil reserves play a very important role in the Canadian economy. Oil sands from areas such as Alberta have been described as “Canadians greatest buried energy treasure” by popular magazines such as Time magazine. Oil sands are a naturally existing mixture of sand, clay and other materials such as water and bitumen. Some materials in oil sands including bitumen are highly viscous that they need to be treated and refined before they can be used by industrial sites in order to produce fuels such as gasoline. Oil sands can be refined to make oil. There are approximately 170.4 billion barrels of oil that can be used in the Northern part of Alberta. Approximately 80% of the oil sands can be recovered through the In-situ production. 20% of the 80% is oil that can be recovered and purified by mining. Bitumen, a highly viscous material in oil sands is found by mining 90% of the time. While oil sands have a positive effect on us, it has a very negative effect on the environment. Oil sands have a very negative effect on aquatic ecosystems all around the world. Oil sands use up a lot of the water and energy. At present, two to five barrels of natural and recycled water are needed for every barrel of oil produced for mining. Oil sand project affect the natural aquatic ecosystems. Some of the negative effects oil sands have on aquatic ecosystems are that sometimes oil sands…
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