A new report, Dirty Diplomacy: The Canadian Government’s Global Push to Sell the Tar Sands, details how the Harper government is teaming up with the big oil companies to attack climate legislation in the US and Europe, while vilifying environmental and First Nations groups here at home.
Simply put, when the government was told that the tar sands are creating problems for water quality, climate change and human rights, they chose to go with a public relations campaign backed by some brass-knuckle politics rather than force the oil companies to clean up their act.
The report draws heavily on confidential documents obtained under Access to Information legislation. As we went through these behind-the-scenes notes, it quickly became clear that we are never going to be able to match the oil industry in the back rooms, so we've teamed up with some friends to drag what our government is doing in our name out into the light of day.
Or the light of candles, as was the case at vigils organized outside Canadian embassies and consulates across Europe and the U.S., to remind our diplomats (and politicians) that their efforts on behalf of the tar sands are no longer passing without notice.