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Canada is cleaning up the image of its oil sands

Big industrial projects are ugly. Under pressure, Canada is taking steps to improve the image of its oil sands

Earth Day, 22 April, may seem an incongruous date for the governments of Canada and Alberta to launch a new website to track oil-sands contaminants in the environment. But environmentalists, many of whom oppose the developments in Canada, had reason to cheer.The website marks the first time that timely data relating to the oil-sands industry’s impact on land, air and water has been made public; and all in raw, unedited form, too. The federal and provincial authorities spent C$50 million ($48.5m) on the programme – a bargain if it helps clean up their image as eco-bruisers. Canada plans to double oil-sands output to 3.8m barrels a day within the next 10 years. Environmental concerns and the p

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