Is the tar sands project in Canada the biggest of its kind?



  1. 0 Votes

    The oil sands project in Alberta is the largest of its kind, with Canada having produced 170 billion barrels of oil, and the reserves are estimated to harbor 3.5 trillion barrels of oil. That makes Canada second only to Saudi Arabia as an oil resource.

    But while Canada has the biggest oil sands project, Venezuela has a great amount of oil sands as part of its resources as well. The oil in Venezuela is warm because of its proximity to the equator, and therefore easier to extract conventionally, but still is too heavy to be transported by traditional pipeline or to be processed in normal refineries. Also, because of the political turmoil and lack of access to technology that, unlike Canada, Venezuela has, the country has not been able to jump on the oil sands industry. 

  2. 0 Votes

    The statement that there are 3.5 trillion barrels of reserves in Canada’s tar sands is incorrect. There might be that much oil in place, but “reserves” means economically recoverable oil. The common estimate for Canada’s total oil reserves (tar sands plus other) is about 175 billion barrels – vastly less than 3.5 trillion. In fact, most estimates of the total recoverable oil left in the entire world are about one (1) trillion barrels. (the linked source puts it at 1.3) The article referenced in the other answer does not say 3.5, but 2.5, and it uses the word reserves incorrectly.

    The statement that Canada has produced 170 billion barrels of oil is also incorrect; the report cited in the other answer indicates correctly that that amount is the estimated RECOVERABLE reserve in Canada.

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