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Tarsands Blinding Alberta to Its True Renewable Potential

10/17/2014 02:27 EDT | Updated 12/17/2014 05:59 EST
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A large power shovel excavates heavy oil loaded sand from a Alberta Oilsands open pit mine near Fort McMurray.

On Tuesday, Greenpeace is embarking on an Alberta tour to two cities, three rural communities and two First Nations to talk about solutions.

Together with three speakers we will be sharing stories of hope, talking about solutions already being implemented around the world, and pushing the Alberta government to catch up.

The Alberta government is so fixated on extracting the destructive tar sands that it's missing out on Alberta's real potential. Rather that causing rising greenhouse gas emissions, countless treaty rights violations, incredible disturbances to land, air and water, the government could be a leader in clean energy solutions.

Alberta has one of the world's best solar resources. It gets more hours of sunlight than almost any province in Canada, much more than solar powerhouse Germany, and Alberta has the knowledge and workforce to make the change if only it had some government leadership to do it.

The same is true for wind and geothermal. Alberta uses less than 1% of its wind potential. There are a lot of wind projects in the queue but the Alberta government just isn't approving them. On geothermal energy, Alberta workers have the drilling knowledge to unlock the technology and provide another renewable, everlasting source of energy but they are tied up digging up tar sands and building pipelines very few want.

So while the Alberta government continues to squander the province's real potential, we will be travelling the province pushing for it to finally embrace them.

The solutions tour will bring Keystone XL pipeline fighter and renewable advocate Jane Kleeb, from Bold Nebraska, together with author and journalist Andrew Nikiforuk and solar and wind experts David Isaacs and Randall Benson. Each one is bringing stories and solutions to help get us out of the problems the Alberta government has got us into.

If you're in Alberta we hope you'll come to one of the tour stops and listen to Jane Kleeb as she tells the story of not only how her community is stopping the KeystoneXL tarsands pipeline from endangering the Oglala aquifer but also how they are also building real clean energy solutions in the process. From a solar powered barn, to replanting sacred corn that has been lost for generations, Jane tells a story of hope and resistance.

Together with the other speakers these will be moments not to be missed.

Greenpeace is pushing for solutions and this tour is another step in that fight. Send a message to the Alberta government and let them know its time to go green.

You can read more about your speakers and dates of the tour at: http://www.albertatarsandsnetwork.ca/solutionstour

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