This post was brought to you by the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers via sheblogs. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of CAPP.
Back in 2010 my husband and I had made the crazy decision to build our home all by ourselves on the family owned farmland. We had big dreams and plans to spend Christmas in our new home together as a family less than a year later. Among many hurdles we learned very quickly that new construction would never go as smoothly as planned; a self-build such as ours was even more problematic. A big problem was starting with nothing but crop land where we wanted to build, no developed road to reach the 1/4 mile in where we would turn into our drive, no water, no electricity, no power, nothing! We literally started from scratch.
A few years later and a lot of blood, sweat and tears, we have long moved in to our work in progress. Anyone who builds knows the high aspirations one has for a fully complete, move-in ready home but that doesn’t always pan out, especially if you are doing the work all DIY; before long you find yourself living among the chaos of construction, ongoing projects and building supplies.
I think back to when this all began and shake my head at how long it took just to dig the hole for our basement. The number of permits, the land survey, the government environmental agency loopholes we had to jump through and in the end we were like giddy school kids watching the trackhoe dig the very first bucket of dirt. It was our new beginning and a start to a life long trail of memories to come.
I cannot imagine the days before big machinery when all you had to rely on was you hard working hands and work horses. Luckily in this day in age we have the ability to tap into Canada’s natural resources to help turn big jobs such as ours into lifelong memories for families. I’ve mentioned before that I am a proud Saskatchewan resident but I’m even more proud to be a Canadian farmer in a country which holds the world’s third largest natural oil reserves in one of the prairie provinces where one of 3 oil deposits are found, The Athabasca, Peace River, and Cold Lake areas in Alberta and Saskatchewan.
Without our natural reserves of oil deposits my life would be very different; farm life would be very different and very hard. When we built our house we had to rely on the use of heavy machinery for various jobs, the trackhoe to dig our basement is an obvious one but we had no road to drive the 1/4 mile into our new farm yardsite and thanks to this massive piece of machinery, a Yuke tractor, and a full day of moving dirt, we had a newly built lane and a walkout basement.
Our home is built with Canadian made materials, wood, Styrofoam and batted insulation, shingles rated for high prairie winds, energy saving windows rated for the coldest of Canadian winters, materials that require the use of Petroleum to produce. Petroleum is an essential part of my everyday life in more ways than I can count. Without it, my family would not be protected from the elements on a farm we built to sustain our family for generations to come. Without it my kids would not have special bonding moments that are created when we share our multiple DIY projects; teaching the ways of the farm young is what we do with pride.
Life on the farm is very rewarding. Nurturing our garden and animals with hard work, sweat and love in order to feed the mouths of others is indescribable but it’s hard. Many times we fall into bed, muscles aching, after days of farm work. Without Petroleum we couldn’t feed our farm animals the back-breaking 1300 lbs hay bales our tractor so easily moves into place, a tractor that works between two farms, ours and my in-laws, a tractor that we rely on in the dead of winter to clear roads and allow my kids to get to school.
Without Petroleum my husband would be out of a job, along with thousands of other Canadians who rely on the refinery industry, and I cannot count the many ways that would effect our family. My husband works as an industrial Electrician at an oil refinery, one trade of many that would be out of a job without the use of Petroleum and the products derived from it. We rely on his income to pay our household bills, to run our farm and to feed our animals and family.
Tapping into Canada’s largest natural oil deposits is in our best interest and the interest of millions of other Canadian families by the way of life, economy and job stability. Our daily life is affected; is yours?
For more information about the Oil Sands industry visit oilsandstoday.ca
Disclosure: This post was brought to you by the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers via sheblogs. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of CAPP.