I am drawn to write a review of Tar Sands: Dirty Oil and the Future of a Continent after reading the negative reviews of Nikiforuk's book. He does like to paint a vivid picture, and sometimes lapses into hyperbole, but the wealth of information in here is comprehensive and well-sourced in an extensive bibliography. This book covers the history, culture, production, corruption, social impacts, and ecological devastations of the Tar Sands oil extraction in Alberta, Canada. The author also provides his own predictions (as terrible as that may seem), and offers a set of common sense solutions. The corruption of local and national political forces by big oil conglomerates, however, makes any of the solutions presented difficult to imagine really occurring.
This book gives necessary background on an important and colossal, yet somewhat hidden from Americans, ecological rape happening to the North American continent. My only criticism is that I wish he had included more perspectives from First Nation people such as the Athabascan nation. This is a book to read, and then get angry over, and then move to become active in promoting environmental justice and sanity over the extreme greed of the oil industries.