The following letter was sent to the DOB from Glenn Gradeen, the CEO of Tangle Creek Energy Ltd., after news that David Suzuki was being awarded an honorary degree from the University of Alberta. He also sent this letter to the chancellor and president and vice-chancellor of the U of A.

Douglas Stollery, Chancellor University of Alberta

David Turpin, President and Vice-chancellor, University of Alberta 


As a lifelong and committed Albertan, I am appalled at this. This must be stopped. The U of A needs to rethink its decision. It’s another populist move by an institution which clearly does NOT think deeply about what it is doing.

Let’s not be naïve — David Suzuki has a fiscal incentive to promote the negative message about our energy industry. He has become a multi-millionaire on the back of denigrating our industry. If those of us who make our livelihoods in the energy industry are seen as being biased — please be aware Suzuki is equally biased in the other direction — and makes his living and funds his foundation by spreading misinformation about us. We in the energy industry work with the facts — he is not so hampered — and anyone who has seen him talk knows he is NOT an objective individual.  He is a populist cheerleader. There wouldn’t be a U of A without us. He couldn’t even get to Alberta to accept this without us. He wouldn’t be able to expect to live to his age if it wasn’t for us. This is one of the most vibrant, high tech and exciting industries on the planet — and Canada and Alberta in particular are the models for the world in terms of transparency and responsible development.  We LEAD THE WAY in terms of cutting emissions. The world needs more Canadian oil — not less.  In Suzuki’s world we will be buying it from jurisdictions that just don’t give a darn — that pollute and kill their own people ad hoc. I know — I’ve worked there. Why doesn’t Suzuki go take his message to Saudi or Nigeria or Russia? It’s because he would end up in jail or worse — and for him it’s not about doing the right thing. It’s all about making money for Suzuki.

I implore the U of A to re-consider and think deeply about doing the right thing — and perhaps even working to expose the populist as a fraud. 

Kind Regards,

Glenn Gradeen,
President & CEO, Tangle Creek Energy Ltd.