The moment you start talking about serious energy problems, some idiot is likely to pipe up with the supposed solution:
"What about the tar sands? There's a trillion barrels of oil there, smarty pants! We'll be running Chevy Suburbans FOR EVER!!!"
Well, there are a number of problems with the tar sands. First and foremost, they take much more energy to make then you get in the final product. This isn't necessarily a deal breaker - every bite of meat you've ever eaten was not a terribly efficient energy source. But with tar sands, where the necessary energy is heat, and lots of it, the only options are a) using lots of increasingly scarce natural gas, or b) nuclear power. Using clean, efficient methane to make dirty, inefficient gasoline should probably be illegal, and I'd be surprised if Albertans wanted several new nuclear power plants so that Toronto can keep driving SUVs.
In any case, legendary oil prospector Boone Pickens agrees with the non-idiots on this one: Alberta is not going to save us. Basically, it costs too much for too little supply - Boone estimates over $300 billion dollars for 9 million barrels per day of production - quite a bit more than we get thus far out of Alberta. To deliver all of our current global demand (not a serious proposition by any means) we'd need trillions in investment dollars that simply aren't there.
And how bizarre is it that $300 billion is a reasonable amount for the private market to spend on oil, but a similar sum spent by the government to save oil would have newspaper editorial boards screaming about Communism and creeping fascism? Never mind the almost $200 billion spent to ruin the lives of brown people with funny names...