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Red Tuque Books Inc.  9781546452300
Title: Bitumen
Sub-Title: The people. performance and passions behind Alberta's oil sands
Author: Peter McKenzie-Brown
ISBN: 9781546452300
Publication Date: 2017
Publisher: Peter McKenzie-Brown
Format: Trade Paperback
Size: 6 x 9
Price: 26.00

This book is the story of the world's second-largest petroleum resource, Alberta's oil sands. The many tales woven into the manuscript speculate about the earliest Aboriginal encounters with this material, but the known story begins in 1715, with Hudson Bay Company reports written in English.

The cover photo shows the Bitumount oil sands plant, which bravely tried to make an oil sands mine profitable during the Great Depression, when an international cartel kept oil prices artificially low.

Countless men and women have been behind that sector, most of them unknown to history, and a photo at the beginning of this book makes that idea clear. The book's title page shows Karl Clark, the first great oil sands scientist, on the left. The two men working with him, however, are unidentified in the records.

There is, perhaps, a parable in that. The industry's leaders, its academics, many of the technical reports of the engineers and the geologists, and the critics and other commentators unknowingly reserved their places in history. For the countless others, their work was a job.