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Vivian Krause explainer

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Krause advocates for maximum exploitation of Canada’s tar sands. In her December 7, 2010 testimony in front of the Canadian Parliamentary Committee on Natural Resources, Krause stated that, “The development of Alberta oil is a billion dollar opportunity, and I hope that we will make the most of that opportunity.” 

Krause says she believes that Canada’s natural resources make it “the pantry of North America” and that “there’s an American interest that’s served if the exports, especially of our oil to Asia, are blocked.”

Krause's theory that U.S. charitable foundations are working to protect "an American interest" in receiving tar sands oil from Canada by funding efforts to block oil tanker traffic along the British Columbia coast (i.e. Asian export routes) has been challenged by the Dogwood Initiative, which points to the fact that the same U.S. foundations are funding efforts to block the Keystone XL pipeline that would carry tar sands oil from Canada to U.S. Gulf Coast refineries. 

Tides Canada Foundation President Ross McMillan responded to Krause’s allegations in a letter published in the Financial Post, stating that: “As a registered Canadian charity, operating in full compliance with charitable laws, Tides Canada will continue to unite diverse interests and forge innovative solutions to tough environmental and economic challenges, in Alberta and elsewhere. And despite Krause’s suggestions to the contrary, there is nothing nefarious about that.” 

Her repeated focus on the Tides Foundation and its grantees is reminiscent of the special attention that former Fox News host Glenn Beck paid to the Tides Foundation on his TV show.

In an article in the Vancouver Observer, Linda Solomon – sister of Tides board member Joel Solomon - asserted that Vivian Krause employs “echoes of Beckian hyperbole.  Claiming that Americans have funded Tides donations to the Canadian environmental movement to the tune of 6 million dollars since 2003, Krause says only paragraphs later that this "means the Alberta oil industry is up against a billion-dollar gorilla." 

Krause has also campaigned against the David Suzuki Foundation’s work on open net pen salmon farming in British Columbia, accusing the organization of using bad science to bolster its position that closed containment salmon farming is more environmentally responsible than open net pen salmon aquaculture.

In a May 2011 article in the New Westminster News Leader, Kraus claims that closed containment farming operations are “about mitigating market impacts, not environmental impacts.”

Her claims have been rebutted by the David Suzuki Foundation and other organizations. 

Krause suggested in a Financial Post commentary piece that David Schindler, a world-renowned water biologist at the University of Alberta, was part of a conspiracy to produce science matching the “agenda” of the Tides Foundation and others. Dr. Schindler responded to Krause’s allegations in a follow-up letter to the Financial Post. Schindler wrote that Krause “ignored some basic facts about the funding for the [contaminant] study,” and noted that, “all major universities have policies to protect scientists from pressure by funding agencies that attempt to bias or suppress their findings”.

With files and research from SourceWatch.  Permission under Creative Commons agreement

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