It sounds like you are in Estevan, Saskatchewan. I lived there for a year: hottest summer and coldest winter!
I’ve got about 12 years in the oilfields. It is a great occupation to make an above average income without much education. It challenges your macho psyche fighting the weather and moving big iron. And that big paycheck feeds that psyche as well. Another feature of the oilfield is that it is exciting. Everyday has different challenges and problems to solve. And it is an occupation that a worker can move up the ladder. I can see why many oilfield workers don’t like the idea of getting a job in town. The oilfields is where they need to be to fulfill their “actualization” needs.
The environmentalists should not blame the oilfield workers. The ultimate action should belong in the wallet: don’t buy as much oilfield products if you don’t like the environmental impact. There are lots of things we could do reduce this consumption. This is where the environmental battle should be fought — not against the workers and their employers.