Freelance writer and former editor of Toronto Star Wheels Mark Richardson writes about Neil Young being named Toronto Star Wheels’ Newsmaker of the year.
“For playing concerts in January, writing a book and spreading his message through the year, and for actively promoting alternative fuel — while never forgetting that cars are really cool — Neil Young is Wheels’ Newsmaker of 2014,” Richardson writes.
He quotes Young:
“I’ve had a lot of cars and I bought cars as rewards for projects that I did . . . They were all old cars so they already had a history. And the designs reflected the culture of the time,” Young told the Star’s Ben Rayner in an interview this year.
Richardson writes about Special Deluxe: A Memoir of Life & Cars and the stories about the cars Young has owned, “all of them bought used and all of them interesting.”
“His new book is a chronicle of his experiences as told by the memories his cars invoke, everything from a Mini and a Citroen 2CV to a Corvette and a Hummer H1. Throughout it, he details the fuel consumption and the exhaust emissions of the vehicles. His family’s 1951 road trip to Florida in their new Monarch sedan, for example, spewed about 1,296 pounds of CO2 into the atmosphere each way; that Route 66 drive to L.A. in the hearse would have emitted 4,900 pounds of CO2.”
Eventually, in 2003, a friend of his daughter’s called him a hypocrite for being an environmentalist who drove such gas-guzzlers, and the accusation stuck. He resolved to find alternatives to gasoline for his cars and diesel for his tour buses.
Richardson writes: “His message is not against cars, which he loves passionately, but against the fuel that powers them. ‘We can have as many cars as we want, as long as the highways can hold them,’ he told the Star, “but we have to think smart about how they run.”
Today, the Toronto Star opinions about Neil and his recent activities in Canada, giving a summary about his longrunning political attitude and actions as a musician and artist.
As The Passenger says: The music we march to didn’t just show up on the radar last year sometime. They all know that. Consolidate your feces dark siders, Neil Young has proudly represented workers for decades. 
Referring to a recent poll in the Calgary Herald “Most Albertans object to Young’s remarks” it is written:
Today Young is outraged again, only this time it’s with his home country. He hates the oilsands. He thinks it’s the world’s greatest environmental disaster and he believes the health of First Nations peoples, who live near the projects, is threatened.
On a recent visit to northern Alberta, Young gave voice to these opinions. The oil industry and their supplicants summarily dismissed his views. The aging rock star was said to have his facts wrong (even though we lack a widely accepted set of facts about the environmental and health effects of the oilsands). He was characterized as just another in a long list of celebrity activists who uncritically accept the views of those opposed to the oilsands.
Oh yeah, musicians should just shut up and play. For the cool and calm summary of Neil’s reply to these critizisms, Neil replied wonderfully in his “Calgary Adress“. Like music is a place devoid of emotion or discussion or revolution.
A lot of the polled people disagree with Neil’s points of views about the Oil Sands, the climate change, the environmental destruction and the “greed” Canada sells out to the Big Oil players. However, a majority is very concerned and believe the oilsands are damaging the Alberta province’s ecosystems.
“No matter how you feel, there’s a discussion going on around the breakfast table. That’s real, that’s big, that’s Canada,” Young said.
The T-Star concludes:
Big oil has spent tens of millions of dollars in advertisements and public relations gimmicks to convince Canadians and Americans of the unambiguous merits of the oilsands. This has been done in part to pressure the Obama administration to approve the Keystone XL Pipeline project. Whatever positive effect this expensive PR effort has yielded, Neil Young could wipe out in an afternoon of inspired song writing.
The message to Big Oil should be clear. When an angry Neil Young shows up on your doorstep, don’t dismiss him the way you do all your other critics. Give him the respect he deserves and consider his views carefully, lest he train his formidable lyrical and melodic arsenal on you.
Neil Young on oil sands: ‘Fort McMurray looks like Hiroshima’
Michael Babad, The Globe and Mail
Published Tuesday, Sep. 10 2013, 7:48 AM EDT
Young on oil sands
Canadian rocker Neil Young is wading into the heated debate over the oil sands and the proposed Keystone XL pipeline, warning of the health effects on First Nations peoples and the “wasteland” that is Fort McMurray.
Mr. Young, one of Canada’s best-known singer-songwriters since the 1960s, told a conference in Washington yesterday that he recently travelled to Alberta, where “much of the oil comes from, much of the oil that we’re using here, which they call ethical oil because it’s not from Saudi Arabia or some country that may be at war with us.”
He was at a National Farmers Union conference on Capitol Hill meant to support alternative fuels, such as ethanol, which he did at length, slamming Big Oil and talk about his own LincVolt, an old Continental that runs on ethanol and electricity.
Here’s what he said about the oil sands:
“The fact is, Fort McMurray looks like Hiroshima. Fort McMurray is a wasteland. The Indians up there and the native peoples are dying. The fuels all over – the fumes everywhere – you can smell it when you get to town. The closest place to Fort McMurray that is doing the tar sands work is 25 or 30 miles out of town and you can taste it when you get to Fort McMurray. People are sick. People are dying of cancer because of this. All the First Nations people up there are threatened by this.”