This is the reason for this I'm stumped right now your choice to feature ads on network television EthicalOil.org.
I'm all about the work you've done, but the logic of the promotion of oil from tar sands by appealing to our desire for the emancipation of women, and our desire to assist in the protection of women in authoritarian regimes such as Saudi Arabia, is flawed and misleading.
Advertising [below], which broadcasts exclusively on the network in Canada, and claims that the strict rules in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to prevent women from driving, from leaving their homes or working without a male guardian's permission. With these sad facts established, advertising appeal strongly to the deep emotions about women's rights, human rights and basic political freedoms, which means that by buying oil, "conflict", and we support oppression.
Advertising displays tar sands in Canada as a "moral oil" alternative "to oil the conflict." At the end of the declaration is opposed and said, "It's an option we have to make."
So, be clear, the argument put forward by the network is to expand the production of tar sands will help liberate women from oppressive petrocracies such as Saudi Arabia. It also appears that means we must support the controversial pipeline Keystone XL, a project that will expand large-scale production of tar sands, because it will reduce our dependence on oil conflict.
Let's unpack that argument a little further.
I agree with you that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia women's rights violations. But let's be perfectly clear: the relevance of the ad campaign is trying to make - that the expansion in the production of tar sands and the emancipation of women in Saudi Arabia as - do not withstand scrutiny.
And about whether to choose or not to buy bitumen from tar sands has any real impact on oil revenues in Saudi Arabia. We live in a world that is hungrier and hungrier for the stuff. The United States and Canada collectively held less than 5 percent of the world's proven oil reserves. And increase production from tar sands is not greatly reduce our dependence on foreign oil, and it will not reduce the global demand for crude oil in Saudi Arabia.
Kate Sheppard notes Mother Jones ably that even with the increase in tar sands production, Saudi Arabia will continue to have the largest oil reserves in the world and be the largest exporter in the world. Expansion of the tar sands just makes it easier for us to keep on delaying the transition to clean energy.
Glenn Hurowitz, a senior fellow at the Center for International Policy, and does a great job of debunking this claim. Basic economics of the oil industry shows that the argument that domestic drilling and reduce consumption of foreign oil is flawed. Here's how it works: