Greenpeace says bury carbon capture plan

- It looked like an Easter egg hunt but proved to be much more lucrative.

After the quest, University of Alberta student Sam Vance-Law had a little more green in his jeans.

The English student unearthed $600 in cash Greenpeace had buried on the grounds of the Alberta legislature as a stunt to protest the province's carbon capture scheme.

"I've been here since 9:30 a.m.," said Vance-Law, grinning.

"Four hours, six hundred bucks - someone work that out for me," said the 22-year-old, who found the cash in a metal box buried under a spruce tree at the back of the legislature.

Dozens of people, some bearing garden trowels, checked flower beds and other locations on the grounds in their hunt for the cash.

The digging was confined mostly to flower beds where there wasn't any grass.

Greenpeace was on site and gave hourly clues to the treasure hunters.

"The $600 is the amount every man, woman and child in Alberta will have to pay for carbon capture," said Greenpeace spokesman Mike Hudema.

"Albertans should not have to pay to clean up the greenhouse gas pollution of industries.

"Taxpayers shouldn't be footing the bill for an unproven technology that, at the end of the day, won't even put a dent in emissions pouring out of the tarsands," he said.

Alberta has earmarked $2 billion to capture carbon dioxide before it's emitted into the atmosphere. It would then be stored underground.

Recently the province's largest oilsands producers indicated they didn't want to participate — by accessing the carbon capture cash — saying it would be better put toward capturing the gases from other industries such as coal-fired electricity plants.

Carbon capture came up in question period yesterday when NDP MLA Rachel Notley blasted the government for pursuing the technology calling it a "fool's pursuit".

"Why don't you landfill your carbon capture idea, admit it's just a PR tool and prevent further job losses by investing this money where it creates the most jobs, in infrastructure?" Notley asked the premier.

Premier Ed Stelmach pooh-poohed the criticism saying the province recently received an award for its carbon capture commitment from The Aspen Institute that co-sponsored the awards with National Geographic magazine, which published an article earlier this year criticizing Alberta's oilsands.

"Even the president of the United States himself recognized that carbon capture is the way to go," Stelmach told the House.

"Alberta is taking a leadership role in carbon capture and storage."


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