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Tar sands & oil sands - Sept 18

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Many more articles are available through the Energy Bulletin homepage

Investors press for disclosure of tar sands' climate risk

Terry Macalister, Guardian
F&C Management, the UK's oldest investment trust, has teamed up with a group of US and Canadian fund managers to halt Wall Street financial regulators softening the rules on tar sands, arguing that new rules should take account of the carbon impact of reserves disclosed by oil and gas companies.

The move reflects changing attitudes among mainstream investors to the impact of commercial activities that could worsen global warming and is aimed at discouraging the US securities & exchange commission (SEC) from allowing energy firms to include carbon-heavy tar sands in their reserves submissions to the regulator.

Elizabeth McGeveran, senior vice-president in F&C's governance and sustainable investment team, said it was important for investors to be able to assess accurately the risk profile of reported reserves at a time when governments around the world were taking an increasingly hard line on carbon pollution.
(15 September 2008)

Environmentalists target oil sands investors

Norval Scott, Globe and Mail
CALGARY — Environmental group Greenpeace Tuesday launched a new attack on Alberta's oil sands, claiming that energy companies BP PLC and Royal Dutch Shell have underestimated the potential risks to investors of oil sands development.

The report has the backing of several British investment firms, including Holden and Partners, Innovest and Co-operative Asset Management.

Co-operative Asset Management, a fund worth almost $6-billion, also launched a campaign to persuade other institutional investors to support its view that the risks of developing the oil sands are too uncertain, and that BP and Shell should halt their activities.
(16 September 2008)

Weak oil and debt markets may bedevil oil sands plans

Jeffrey Jones, Reuters
A double whammy of tumbling crude prices and shaky credit markets could force some companies to delay multibillion-dollar Canadian oil sands projects, cutting the country's overall output forecast.

Most at risk are developments that are in the design phase but have yet to start construction. Some have already been delayed due to surging costs, a tight labor market and stricter regulatory scrutiny.
(15 September 2008)

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