This was the message that Alberta premier Ed Stelmach faced last night at a fund raising dinner in Edmonton last night. Just as Ed ‘Big Oil’ Stelmach was preparing to give a rousing ‘Why Greenpeace is wrong’ speech, two Greenpeace activists dropped down from the false ceiling and unfurled a banner reading Ed Stelmach, the best premier oil money can buy.

Of course the question is, why does Ed Stelmach feel the need to have a fund raising event in the first place? Alberta is awash in oil money. And with prices running at over $110 a barrel Alberta is by far the richest province in Canada. Alberta in the accounting vernacular is ‘in the black’, we are also in the black as far as oil goes, we have lots of it! Of course that does not mean we get a price break, hell no, we pay more here than

Unfortunately the reclamation of that oil does have an environmental impact. If you want to see Ed Stelmach’s eyes glaze over, just mention ‘Kyoto’. It does not matter how you spin it, getting oil out of the ground does have an impact on the environment.

The question is, who is Ed Stelmach helping? Is it Alberta, or is it Big Oil?

The miscreants that disrupted Mr Ed’s (wasn’t that an old TV show?) soirée were arrested and given $287 tickets for trespassing.

Ed Stelmach was not at all surprised by the disruption, and shared his comments about it by saying “We’re certainly not going to leave it to Greenpeace or the Sierra Club, because at the end of the day they’re not accountable to anybody.”

What I want to know is, who is accountable?

Simon Barrett

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