March 22nd, 2018

How oilsands changed Canada and Alberta forever

By Canadian Press on May 9, 2017.

David O’Laney unlocks the gate to the historic site he is charged with protecting and swings it wide, allowing entrance to what is arguably the birthplace of modern Alberta and all that has meant to the rest of Canada. Appropriately, the road in is paved with bitumen. “This is where the first experimental oilsands processing took place,” says O’Laney, who monitors and maintains the site for Alberta Culture. “This” — a stretch of Athabasca River bank north of Fort McMurray — is Bitumount.  It’s where almost a century ago, men and money laboured mightily to turn the black, gooey, sandy gunk into something — anything — that people would pay for. Eventually, an industry was founded. The result changed Alberta — and Canada — forever.

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