The Dernogalizer

February 17, 2010

Athletes, Environmentalists Call on Canada to Save Winter Olympics, End Oil Sands Destruction

Filed under: Energy/Climate,National Politics — Matt Dernoga @ 12:44 am
Tags: , ,

February 16, 2010

Contact: Kristina Johnson, Sierra Club
(415) 977-5619

Charles Campbell, Dogwood Initiative
Tel: 250 370 9930 ext 22 cell: 250 858 9990
Athletes, Environmentalists Call on Canada to Save Winter Olympics, End Oil Sands Destruction
Canada’s Dirty Oil Speeds Global Warming, Threatens Future Snowpack

Vancouver, B.C. – Champion winter athletes joined with international environmental groups today in calling on Canada to save the Winter Olympics.

“Canada has some of the best snowboarding in the world, but the oil sands industry is going to blow it. This is the dirtiest oil on earth. If want to save our snow, we have to stop it,” said Jeremy Jones, big mountain snowboarding legend and founder of Protect our Winters.

Increasing concern over the impact of global warming on the future of snow sports is putting a spotlight on Canada’s oil sands industry, the country’s fastest growing source of global warming pollution and the dirtiest form of oil in the world.

“We can’t seriously combat global warming while getting fuel from the world’s dirtiest source. Unless we act now to combat climate change, it could put an end to the winters we know and love,” said Mike Richter, Olympic hockey goalie and silver medalist.

Today, Sierra Club launched a U.S.-based “Love Winter, Hate the Oil Sands” campaign that includes ads targeting winter sports enthusiasts, a new website, a sticker giveaway, and tens of thousands of emails asking Americans to sign a petition to President Obama.

In Vancouver, environmental watchdog Dogwood Initiative will be guiding a team of polar bears through the city in an effort to rescue the Winter Olympics from the oil sands industry.

Oil sands production emits three times the global warming pollution as conventional oil and requires clear cutting ancient forests, wasting and polluting water, and leaving behind massive toxic lakes. By accelerating climate change, the oil sands threaten to bring more drought, receding glaciers, and early snowmelt, creating a bleak future for Olympic sports like skiing and snowboarding.

“As a skier, I’ve already witnessed glaciers melting and ski areas closing around the world because of climate change,” said Alison Gannett, world champion freeskier and founder of the Save Our Snow Foundation. “The global warming emissions from the oil sands are a threat to the future of skiing and the health of our kids.”

The industry has proposed expanding into the U.S. via a sprawling network of pipelines and refineries that would crisscross Montana, South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, Minnesota and Illinois, in many cases using substandard pipe and threatening drinking water and farmland.

“If we allow the oil sands to expand into America, it will undermine all we’ve done to create good, clean, homegrown American energy. By denying permits for these pipelines, we can signal to the rest of the world that our nation is serious about becoming a global leader in the clean energy economy,” said Sierra Club executive director Carl Pope.

Opposition to the oil sands is growing as Americans learn more about the industry. Just last week, two Fortune 500 companies, Whole Foods and Bed Bath and Beyond, announced efforts to remove the oil sands from their supply chains.

“Canada’s identity as a winter wonderland is threatened by its government’s support of dirty oil and inaction on global warming,” said Charles Campbell of the Dogwood Initiative.

To learn more about the campaign, visit
To learn more about the oil sands, visit



  1. Would be great to be able to run ads during the olympics. I picture an ad like this…..

    Panning in on an extremely excited crowd, the excitement builds to a crescendo ….the look of determination on the competitor about to leave the start house. You hear the countdown beeps and the downhill skier explodes out of the gate. The crowd roars! The cow bells are ringing. Just as the level of excitement is at a pinnacle, … so close to the finish line, you see the skier start to slow…. and the the next shot you see why…. the skier comes to a dead stop in the grass on the lower half of the mountain. At this point – just before the finish line – where you would expect to see the largest crowds, the most signs and banners, the loudest cheering – there is no one…. dead silence.
    Just a skier who comes to a halt in the no-snow and in the parting shot, the skier falls over into the muck.

    SAVE OUR SNOW “The global warming emissions from the oil sands are a threat to the future of skiing and the health of our kids.”

    Comment by G. Denemark — February 22, 2010 @ 10:19 am | Reply

    • I think that would work well

      Comment by Matt Dernoga — February 22, 2010 @ 3:38 pm | Reply

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