Latest study carried out by the Natural Resources Defense Council, the Boreal Songbirds Initiative and the Pembina Institute showed that development of Canada's oil sands would be deadly for 6 million to 166 million birds over the next five decades because of habitat loss, shrinking wetlands, accumulation of toxins and other causes. The main problem is that between 22 million and 170 million birds breed in areas that could be subject to oil sands development.
It will be very difficult to find some combination that would work for both industry and environmentalists because Canada's oil sands contain the biggest oil reserves outside the Middle East so it is very unlikely that industry will listen environmentalists demands that want to halt new projects in the oil sands and clean up existing facilities.
Industry is of course claiming that all is done according to environmental regulations, and plans to further exploration of this area. Environmentalists on the other hand say that further industrial development can't go along with bird conservation because of habitat loss.
This report is based on prediction of future big expansion of oil expansion, on an eventual output of 5 million barrels a day that should with current progress happen in about 20 days; oil sands currently produce more than 1 million barrels a day.
On one side lives of million of birds, on other millions of barrels of oil. Is there really a decent chance for birds?