Monday, March 25, 2013

Airway 63

I will resume my budget analysis once the Euro has calmed down a bit as the outcomes will likely further influence my analysis. However in the meantime I just want to make a brief note of an article out of MacLean's I noticed today.

While the article itself focuses on how crowded the airspace is above the oilsands I find a subtler aspect more interesting:
While many oil-sands airports consist of a few small planes on a single strip of tarmac, the biggest companies charter more flights than many of Canada’s top commercial airlines. Combined, oil-sands airplanes move roughly 750,000 people a year, more than municipal airports in St. John’s, Victoria, Regina or Saskatoon.
Please keep in mind that at the moment the oilsands are only producing something like 2mbd and that's supposedly set to expand to 5mbd (at least) by 2030. When I talk about how the infrastructure costs of operating the oilsands outweigh the return this is the sort of scale we're dealing with. Operating aircraft isn't exactly cheap.

The continued operation of oilsands is going to become more unsustainable, this is going to continue to weigh on our public debt in Alberta, the Canadian economy. We are not equipped to handle the infrastructure requirements current operation of these projects need, never mind expansion, and the cost to equip the province to this extent for what is already showing signs of being a temporary industry doesn't make any financial sense nor can a province with such a sparse population afford or staff. We can't sell the stuff, it's under priced for the risk we take on as a population anyway, the power consumption they require is ridiculous, they've now been proven multiple times over to be contaminating the area. Families are moving out because of the pollution. The increased immigration to Alberta and their needs are sinking the government in debt. What do we need now, Airway 63?

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Richard Fantin is a self-taught software developer who has mostly throughout his career focused on financial applications and high frequency trading. He currently works for CenturyLink

Nazayh Zanidean is a Project Coordinator for a mid-sized construction contractor in Calgary, Alberta. He enjoys writing as a hobby on topics that include foreign policy, international human rights, security and systemic media bias.

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