Unethical Oil: Why Is Canada Killing Wolves and Muzzling Scientists To Protect Tar Sands Interests?

In the latest and perhaps most astonishing display of the tar sands industry’s attacks on science and our democracy, the government of Alberta has made plans to initiate a large-scale wolf slaughter to provide cover for the destruction wrought by the industrialization of the boreal forest ecosystem.

In the coming years, an anticipated 6,000 wolves will be gunned down from helicopters above, or killed by poison strychnine bait planted deep in the forest. Biologists and other experts say the cull is misguided, and that their studies have been ignored or suppressed. Worse, they warn that although the government is framing the wolf cull as a temporary measure, it has no foreseeable end.

The Alberta government has already initiated the wolf cull in regions of Alberta heavily affected by industrial development. In the Little Smoky region, an area heavily affected by the forestry, oil and gas industries and just a few hundred kilometeres away from the tar sands region, a broad wolf cull has already begun, claiming the lives of more than 500 wolves.

Recently the Alberta government proposed a plan to open this brutal form of 'wildlife management' to other regions, suggesting an extensive and costly cull in place of more responsible industrial development.

This is clear evidence of the fact that Alberta’s tar sands oil is unquestionably conflict oil, despite the propaganda spouted by the “ethical oil” deception campaign. Aside from its disruptive affects on wildlife, tar sands oil is dirty, carbon intensive and energy inefficient from cradle to grave.

And that’s without mentioning the role the tar sands boom has played in Canada’s slide from climate leader to key villain on the international stage. Beyond its environmental consequences, tar sands extraction has negatively affected local tourism and recreation-based economies, impacted public health and torn at the rich fabric of cultural diversity and pride among Albertans and all Canadians.
Behind the Harper administration’s unbounded drive to drown Canada’s reputation in tar sands oil pollution lies the political corruption characteristic of the classic petro-state. Free speech is being oppressed, while respected members of the scientific community claim they are being muzzled, ignored and intimidated.

Conservation and environmental groups are being falsely attacked as ‘radical ideologues' and 'saboteurs'. Neighbors are pitted against each other while important decisions about the future prosperity of all Canadians are rigged to favor the interests of multinational oil companies and foreign investors.

The wolf cull is ostensibly designed to protect northern Alberta’s woodland caribou, a species that in recent years has become critically threatened. But scientists have ridiculed the plan, saying this sort of ‘wildlife management’ turns the wolf into an innocent scapegoat, while the real culprit – the province’s aggressive timber, oil and gas development – is spared any real scrutiny or accountability.

According to this strategy, caribou and wolf alike fall prey to another kind of predator: multinational corporations.

Cry Wolf: An Unethical Oil Story

Over the last several years, Alberta has killed more than 500 wolves using aerial sharpshooters and poisoned bait in order to conceal the impact of rapid industrial development on Canada’s iconic woodland caribou.

Independent scientists say that declining caribou health stems chiefly from habitat destruction caused by the encroachment of the tar sands and timber industries. But in a perverse attempt to cover industry’s tracks, the Alberta government is ignoring the science and shifting the blame to a hapless scapegoat: the wolf.
As DeSmogBlog reported earlier this year, the Alberta Caribou Committee, tasked with the recovery of the province’s dwindling caribou populations, is dominated by timber, oil and gas industry interests. Participating scientists have been silenced – their reports rewritten and their recommendations overlooked.

The prospect of the expansion of this unscientific wolf cull, projected to claim the lives of roughly 6,000 wolves over the next five years, has outraged conservationists and wildlife experts. While the wolves dodge bullets and poison, this scandal is flying largely under the public radar.

A team of DeSmogBlog researchers traveled to the Tar Sands region to investigate the dirty oil politics behind this fool’s errand. Here is our first report: Cry Wolf: An Unethical Oil Story.


Responses to "Cry Wolf: An Unethical Oil Story (Video)"

  1. Anonymous says:

    This is soooo wrong....if they do this to wolves is cancer for people over 50 because they can't support the baby boomers pensions? We all need protection from the government. It's really getting out of hand.

  2. Anonymous says:

    my comment... GREED

  3. Anonymous says:

    God knew what he was doing when he created the wolf, the wolf is beautiful and must be saved.

  4. Anonymous says:

    The wolf is beautiful and this kind of policy is truly sad. It needs to stop.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Retards killing wolves they should be shot killing poor animals pisses me off this is wrong we need to protect them why don't we go kill people for this what's the def nothing they got to stop everything has to do about money lets go back in time where we didn't even have money then what you do if we go back in time where we don't have what we have today?

  6. Anonymous says:

    this bull crap , killing wolves is wrong, and then lieing about it is even wirse. fixated thing is criminalthing, along withgrooming telling lies, winning the victims over with more lies and tghe crime itself killing wolves and the land for oil.oil will be there but not the lives nor the sanctuary of wild life in canada. do morrison grand junction colo

  7. Anonymous says:

    there's nothing ethical about killing wolves or any wildlife for the economic gain of a few, but yet so many more suffer because of it. If we don't be carefull and correct the injutices and crimes against nature, nature will turn on all of us.

  8. Anonymous says:

    this really sickens me..why isn't this Cruelty to Animals...People go to jail for difference in my mind...

  9. Anonymous says:

    The killing of wolves is going to severely impact the balance of nature. What is next? Bears? It sounds like the assault on the wolf populations is meant to make it safer for the workers who are destroying the countryside ... not the caribou. The destruction of this entire ecosystem will create scars on the earth that will never heal. The areas being mined for tar sands are a visible scar, but the destruction, contamination and death is much more far reaching. Those areas can never be reclaimed. I hope Canadians will be able to stop this madness.

  10. Anonymous says:

    greedy, self-serving bastards.....all because they want to have more than everyone else...why do they think yhey have more right to live than the wolves, the caribou or the bears and forest?
    time to stop the insanity before it's all gone and the Earth is a desert wasteland...

  11. Anonymous says:

    If they are insistant on taking this land, trapping and returning the wolf to a forest would be at least humane. Killing them is wrong, indecent, selfish, horrible and may the killers of these beautiful wolves live the rest of their lives with the karma... what goes around, comes around.

  12. Anonymous says:

    another disgusting and distressing story. Humans will not learn - we continue to destroy our environment for greed and comfort. Clearly the public has little say in these matters as we continue to be manipulated and lied to.

  13. billd75 says:

    When did Canada become property of the Americans, and when did we vote on doing things the way the Americans do or tell us to do. What are we children? Stand up and yell..."Enough and no more" The wolf diet consists of 80% deer, so explain to me how are the Caribou threatened? Ya, I thought is more like the greedy corporations and brain dead politicians we sadly elected to care for OUR (Canadian's) best interest. I see they are no better then any other Government elected in this world. I was once proud of our Government elected, but no more. I have spent years fighting to protect the wolves from human stupidity and I will continue to do so. Turn the tables for a moment and tell me would you like it if all of a sudden humans were disposable like the wolves seem to be.

  14. Unknown says:

    I detest whats happening to the Wolves & all other creatures who are in the way of the greedy business men. We are supposed to be looking after this world, but $ & £ & euros have got in the way of that. Those of us who love this world & the creatures who share it with us are well in the minority. There's to much apathy about, people don't want to get involved -it's to much like hard work. They live in their little worlds & couldn't care less whats happening anywhere else. However I will not give up, I will fight for the Wolves etc until the day I die, that I promise,

  15. Unknown says:

    Seriously something needs to be done. This has to stop. We need to gather, group up regardless of any obstacles and protect the wolves and all creatures from this treatment. If we don't, we will never be able to turn the damage back and have such beautiful creatures that is all just as necessary as our own breaths. Is there not an organization or some sort of group will to join together, take volunteers and go and help these defenseless wolves? Please, I will indeed sign up and help take on those who are responsible.

  16. diane smart says:

    if i had known what was on the video, i would not have watched it, i had to stop it when the wolf was hit. i am still in tears over it, as i am every time i read of the horrible way our wolves are being exterminated on both sides of the U.S.border. i thought hitler was dead. what the hell is going on? i'm sorry, but big money is buying power, again. i wish i could get each one of them and show them what their traps are like, or what it is to run for your life, from something you don't understand in the sky, only to be gunned down. these wolves morn their missing pack mates. they have a soul. what can I do? every person we can recruit, is another voice for our wolves, we have changed things with our voices before, let's do it again!

  17. Anonymous says:

    Can we not start a petition?

  18. Charles says:

    YES...A PETITION AND P.R. TO ALL NEWS MEDIA, THE WILDLIFE DEFENSE LEAGUE AND OTHER RELATED ORGANIZATIONS, in a coordinated media blitz to bring this to greater public

  19. Anonymous says:

    They are bloody murderers solely motivated by greed, and have no conscience or concern for anything except their big, fat, bank accounts in Switzerland. Personally I would rather see the human race obliterated (including me) to save our Earth and the animals that are trying to exist on it. The wolves, bears and boars are no more in England and the same will happen here if people don't open their eyes and their hearts. Every living creature on this Earth has as much right to live, if not moreso, than we humans.

  20. Anonymous says:

    Oh give me a break. Every Province does it, some more than others. The fact of the matter is the oil industry is holding Canadian economy afloat. We need it. You want it to stop, the entire country would have to give up all their little luxories, cars, cell phones, computers, tvs, dvd players, bluerays, mass production of everything including farming. If any of you can come up with a better way of handling the killing of these animals in a more humane and cost effect way by all means lets hear. Relocation is not an option people. For those of you who have pets- cats and dogs or farmers out there.....would you sit by and idly watch a wolf or a coyote attack and kill these animals. I doubt it. Well let me tell you this past summer we lost over 100 cats and dogs and an uncounted amount of livestock to wolves and coyotes because there are too many of them. Their numbers are too large for their 'natural' food source and most of the loss of caribou, elk and deer have nothing to do with the oil sands but rather the increased population of the wolves and coyotes. The cull is needed in this province, when it is not it will be ammended as it has been in the past. This isn't the first time. Oh and just one last note....wolf hunting by strangling snares is popular in Ontario, in fact most of Canada has open hunting season of wolves, its not just Alberta

  21. Anonymous says:

    The guy above me just made at least three blatantly false statements

  22. Anonymous says:

    TO the guy above me.....I happen to live in the province and bore witness to the killing of 100 cats and dogs (mostly cats) and the surronding livestock. Two horses were confirmed kills by wolves, and a little over a dozen full grown cows and some calves. Are you aware a wolf has no problem jumping a four foot fence to get to these animals, including fenced yards with smaller dogs-easy prey. They just wander around my town even during the day. This isn't the first time a cull has been placed in the province. Wolf hunting is very popular across the Nation with no set hunting season, though mostly done during big game season. I am assuming the third so called false statement is regarding the oil industry. Lets just say we send a lot of money out to cover cost of other provinces. Oh and Beef is better tasting.

  23. Anonymous says:

    I can't attest to the wolf attacks, but it wouldn't surprise me. They go unreported a lot, especially for farm animals-its a part of the deal dealing with predatory animals. The past warm winters have driven up the deer population throughout the province, and hiking up the wolf and coyote population.For the past several years there has been a wolf cull in place in Western Alberta that has succeeded in stabilizing the Caribou population and this is what they are hoping for in the Northern Part of the province but of course there is no guarantee. The province is trying to work with the industry to repair and minamalize the enviroment damages, but it doesn't happen over night. Wolves can move 40-50 KM in a night, so relocating is not feasible. BC kills about 1300 wolves a year. Ontario's number is somewhere near 1000 I believe, while Alberta was somewhere in the 500s last year. The following provinces allow wolf hunting with no limit per hunter/trapper: BC, AB, Yukon, NWT, ONT, and NFLD. I agree Alberta beef is better tasting, although that was a weird comment to make. The oil industry is carrying a bulk of the financial income of the nation at this time, sorry to say.

  24. Anonymous says:

    Manitoba hunts them as well with game tags and permits needed to take the wolf home. One site I came across boasted of a hunter taking down five wolves in one week. They ain't hunting them for meat.

  25. Anonymous says:

    How about we cull pedophiles, rapists and murders. Child abusers and women bashers . I think that would be much more affective.

  26. Anonymous says:

    Amen to that! Humans are over populated, and our sickness is destroying the world. How are predators overpopulated when the actual numbers are far lower than a few decades ago? Deer aplenty, I've lived with predators for my whole life, heard these complaints from my neighbors and never seen any proof that any predators were even close to overpopulated. Move to the big city if you can't handle the wilderness.

  27. Anonymous says:

    this is not right stop making excuses that you are using for more gas resources, ( SAVE THE WOLVES

  28. Wolfrock says:

    What fucking People. Kill nthem.... alll Bastards

  29. Anonymous says:

    Very sad. What the hell is wrong with our governments allowing this. Ethical oil my ass no different in Australia with clean coal. How did the almighty dollar become more important than the earth itself. Time for change, stop driving cars all the time and let the oil sit show them that we will not support them it is the only solution, for the power that allows these disgusting things have no ears or eyes and apparently no ethics or morals.

  30. Anonymous says:

    When Peter Lougheed was Premier of Alberta he mandated that the oilsands had to be developed responsibly and ethically with constant monitoring. That there had to be a maximum limit that would be charged for the products by Albertans and Canadians and money would be saved for all Albertans; building roads and hospitals. Ralph Klein became Premier with the backing of the oil companies; he did away with the max limits that we would have pay for our own resources going with investor gains rather than savings for Albertans; trashed all the environmental regulations, the refineries; lowered royalties and allowed oil companies to regulate themselves. Alison Redford is courting any investors from anywhere who want to come in and urging the development of all our resources at an unsustainable rate, thus the rush to destroy all wildlife that stand in the way of the Conservative agenda for investor profit over life. The lies they spew daily to justify the killings keep the money coming into their coffers. Wolves are needed in the balance of nature, the caribou are running out of land because of the oilsands developments.

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