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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

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The Lethbridge Herald (Newspaper) - January 29, 1974, Lethbridge, Alberta THE LITHMIDQI HlftALD TtMMtey. 29, Immense implications ._ for new energy era Western coal boom underway in energy-hungry United States New wealth coal it be- ing harvested in the United States West these days. But much of it is being strip- mined, and environmentalists are concerned that the energy search will despoil the country's majestic beauty. This first of five articles tells of the situation as it is today. By DAVID MUTCH The Christian Science Monitor STANTON, N.D. Lowell Kopping dropped the wing of our small plane and we swept downward. Below, a power plant breathed smoke into the clear blue sky. A bulldozer crawled over a huge pile of coal a black mountain. Half a mile away jagged piles of ravaged earth from a strip mine startled the eye. The coal is part of a vast reservoir in the rolling United States West, which has 70 per cent of U S. coal reserves. A nation thirsty for energy to supplement oil and gas is rac- ing to mine it. A western coal boom is under way, with im- mense long-term implications for a new energy era. Cities miles and more away are being heated and lighted with power from the coal beneath our plane. But, environmentalists cry, will the rush despoil the western majesty of America the beautiful? Many in the West agree with our pilot's comment: "If anything comes to North Dakota, we shouldn't chase it away." But many others do not: They do want to chase away the energy companies that already have bought millions of acres of coal rights here and in Montana, Wyoming, Colorado, Utah, Arizona, and New Mexico. This reporter and a photographer drove miles through the West to learn about mining coal and REGIONAL MEETING ALBERTA CATTLE FEEDERS ASSOCIATION Thursday, January 31 at EXHIBITION PAVILION LETHBRIDQE Speakers: DICK GRAY. President JOHN CARMINE. Director VISITORS WELCOME! oil shale and its effects from officials of coal com- panies, ecologists, con- gressmen, federal and state officials, ranchers, and even barbers. We visited many mines especially strip mines. Our major findings were: The vast amount of coal and oil shale in the West will be little help in solving the im- mediate energy crisis. It can- not make the U.S. energy in- dependent by 1980. World energy demands, however, will likely cause strip mining to grow rapidly in the West. Already a third of all electricity generated in the U S is made from strip-mined coal Restoration of land is growing, with coal companies spending millions of dollars on it a fact that has received little publicity. Yet a study by the National Academy of Sciences finds that the technology for reclaiming strip-mined land in the West to its former usefulness has not been applied widely enough as yet. Industries to convert coal to synthetic natural gas and oil appear to have a large future in the West because the U.S. economy is two thirds dependent on liquid and gas- eous fuels. In future years, some say, the conversion in- dustries could set the price in the U.S. for gas and oil. The West must solve its water shortages if energy development is to grow significantly, and if agriculture is not to suffer. Energy recoverable from oil shale in Colorado, Utah, and Wyoming is less than a tenth of the energy in Western Dragline takes 20-ton bites Coal seam being uncovered by Knife River Coal Co. at Gascoyne, N.D. coal, but is still a stag, amount. Some 600 billion barrels of oil 100 years' supply at today's consumption rates are commercially attractive now from oil shale. Twice that much at least is available, at higher cost. The West promises again to be a new frontier, where there appears to be an une- qualed oppoitunity to recon- cile the nation's new en- vironmental conscience with The income tax help system and how it works: Your part The big thing, the most important thing is simply that you do your income tax. With a self-assessment tax system such as Canada's, the whole thing depends on the co-opera- tion of the taxpayers. It depends on you. Filing deadline is April 30. Which also explains why we're using the term "April Aid" for the help we're going to provide between now and then. (By April 30, it's all over.) Step 2 for you then, is to file as soon as you can. Third- read your Guide. Always, before you fill in any part of your return, read the section in the Guide that applies. Most questions you'll have are answered in the Guide. (Incidentally, "read your Guide" is a phrase you'll be seeing and hearing over and it's true.) Fourth-take to re-check your arithmetic. Even the smallest error holds up the processing of your return. And not only is the correction process it also means your refund is delayed. the help available when you do have questions or problems. Phone, drop in, or write to your own District Taxation Office. Follow April Aid. Use it. Remember the help is there, it's free and it's for you. Our part. First-the Guide. We've tried to make it as easy, as straight- forward, as simple-to-follow and helpful as possible. It's included with your own Tax Pack, and we encourage you to refer to it first, always, for answers. If you need extra copies of the Guide, just call your District Taxation Office and they'll be glad to get them to you. Second-we've got ads, with lots of facts. From now until mid-April, ads will be appearing in this newspaper that deal with areas of Income Tax that generally cause the most questions. We'll be explaining things like Calculation of Canada Pension Plan Overpayment and Unemployment Insur- ance, how Personal Exemptions work, how to figure out Moving and Child Care Expenses and much more. The ads will appear on Tuesday and Thursday, so watch for them and when you see something that applies to you, clip the ad for reference for when you're doing your own return. APRIL AID ADS I4 i Together, we can get it done. Canada Robert Stanbu'y m mstrc Third-we've got people to talk to you on the phone. The telephone number of your own District Taxation Office will be listed on all ads. It's also on the back of your Guide. And we've set up a free Zenith line, (Zenith 0-4000) you can also use anytime. And, on Mondays and Tuesdays, phone lines are open 'til 6 p.m. If you're unsure-call. if MOP IN Fourth-we've got people you can talk to in person, too. Without appointment or charge. If you want to drop by your District Taxation Office and discuss anything you're not clear about-don't hesitate. That's what the people are there for. Fifth-we answer letters. All of them. As quickly and thoroughly as possible. If you want to write about anything, please do. I its need for domestic energy. Tougher laws, more thorough planning, and co-operation are the key elements needed, ex- perts say. A combination of reasons will likely increase strip mining: "Overburden" ground over the coal is so thin in many areas out West that underground mining is impossible because no poten- tial mine roof exists. If attempted, underground min- ing would be uneconomic because it would remove only 10 to 15 per cent of the thick seams. Nationally, fuel-short electric-generating plants de- pend on strip mining for a third of all their coal; and where possible, oil-burning plants are switching to coal, increasing dependence on stripping. With the underground coal industry depressed for a number of reasons, and with labor troubles blaring, growth in coal production in the next three years is expected to be over 90 per cent from strip mining. Western coal is particularly attractive chemically for con- version industries, and large enough blocks of it are available to be assembled to provide factories for 20 years or more. This is not so in the East, where most remaining deposits are already com- mitted. Apparently some of the first emergency money spent by the federal government will be for a study of the best way to develop energy resources in the West. This was recommended in the AEC- directed energy study releas- ed Dec. 1. At a minimum, a study of priorities is what en- vironmentalists want, because haphazard develop- ment is most destructive of land, water, and air quality. TIME RIPE Several prominent en- vironmentalists feel that the time is ripe for increased co- operation between business- energy interests and ecologists. Gordon McDonald, former member of the Council on Environmental Quality and now head of Dartmouth's En- vironmental Studies Group, says that environmentalists recognize there is a serious energy crisis and that some efforts to meet the crisis can also meet environmental goals. "They are not mutually he says. The U.S. is not without ex- amples of co-operation between business and en- vironmentalists. Dr. Beatrice E. Willard, formerly head of the Thorne Canadian war dead lie in 71 countries OTTAWA (CP) In 71 countries the names of Canadians killed in two world wars "liveth for ever more." The Canadians lie with Commonwealth soldiers in burial grounds around the world tended for the most part by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission, of which Canada is a member. The recently-released 1972- 73 annual report of the com- mission shows that servicemen are buried or commemorated in these cemeteries. They include 154 Canadians killed in the First World War and in the Second. The report records the work of the commission in keeping cemeteries in shape. It deals with horticultural problems in some areas, vandalism in others and co-operation by national authorities in most. TEND GRAVES WELL It tells of the planting of trees to hold back desert sands and the testing of a new lawn mower. It shows that Communist countries tend Commonwealth graves with careful attention, as do Britons tending graves for Germans and Germans for Commonwealth troops. Egypt would not permit in- spection of Commonwealth graves in the Suez canal zone but assured the commission they are being cared for. The report describes the principles of the commission as being "that each of the dead should be com- memorated individually b, name either on the headstone on the grave, or by an inscrip- tion on a memorial; that the headstones and memorials should be permanent; that the headstones should be uniform and that there should be no distinction made on account of military or civil rank." AH headstones are two feet, eight inches in height. "Where climate permits the headstones stand in narrow borders, where polyantha roses and small perennials grow, in a setting of lawn trees and shrubs. "Two monuments are com- mon to the ceremonies the Cross of Sacrifice set upon an octagonal base and bearing a bronze sword upon its shaft, and, in the larger cemeteries, the Stone of Remembrance, having carved upon it the words of the Book of Ecclesiates: Their name liveth for ever-more." How much energy is Being used? Christian Science Monitor How much energy do Americans use? More than twice as much, per person per year, as the British; almost three times as much as the West Ger- mans; and 17 times as much as the Brazilians. The average American uses the equivalent of 15 tons of coal a year, or 390 million British thermal units. In 1960, the American used 250 million. Unless conservation really takes hold, estimates are that he will even- tually use as many as 563 million Btu a year. Note: Primeval man used about 4.4 million Btu a year: the equivalent of 340 pounds of coal a year. Ecological Institute in Denver and now a member of the Council on Environmental Quality, says, "Today there is more of a chance than ever for co-operation. This certainly applies to energy development in the West. "The key organization method is for citizens on all sides of a question to meet regularly and to get out all the facts on both sides. This is the heart of democracy. "The key attitude for ecologists is to be wary but willing to communicate Even now government doesn't have the message that we need to conserve. The basic feeling right in the Federal Energy Office is that we are at a plateau and all we need is research for new energy forms so we can take off in a new spurt. Government itself needs to be candid and not afraid of the facts although in conservation work there is often a need for quiet, behind- the-scenes work. Nuclear blast may tap gas WASHINGTON (AP) -The United States Atomic Energy Commission proposes to set off nuclear explosions under ground at its Nevada test site in an effort to loosen natural gas, AEC Chairman Dixy Lee Ray reports. "We continue to believe that nuclear stimulation holds promise for adding significant amounts of natural gas to our proven Dr. Ray told Representative Teno Roncalio (Rep. Roncalio asked the AEC chairman for an explanation of a nuclear stimulation item in a five-year energy program developed by the commission at President Nixon's request. About million is to be used in an experiment involv- ing five or six wells to develop the capability to do this, and the technology would be available for commercial application near the end of the five years, the chairman said. rftf M WANTED SILVER COINS! 1966 or Before Paying 50% over face value. Also Buying All Numismatic Coins PHONE 327-8237 ;