Needless to say, I am one of the people who is upset at the recent State Department release of their Environmental Impact Statement for the Keystone XL Pipeline. Ironically, they got most of the facts right, but used them to come to a conclusion that they do not justify. I also think some folks are being far too quick to blame this on Obama.
Construction of the controversial Keystone XL pipeline would create "numerous" and "substantial" impacts on the environment, the State Department said Friday in a draft environmental impact statement. But the project is a better bet than any of the alternatives, it said in essentially clearing the project to go ahead.
The report concluded that the Canadian synthetic crude oil the pipeline is slated to transport into the U.S. produces 17 percent more greenhouse gases than natural crude oil already refined here. In addition, it said the construction phase of the project would result in carbon dioxide emissions equivalent to about 626,000 passenger vehicles operating for a full year.
Without directly saying so, the report signaled the State Department’s belief that the pipeline should go ahead, concluding that other modes of transportation would have the same impacts and that proposed alternatives — including an above-ground route and a smaller-diameter pipe — "were not reasonable."
And on a central issue of discussion, it concluded that blocking the pipeline wouldn’t make any difference in the U.S.’s high consumption of oil… [emphasis added]
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Here’s the flaw in their logic. When they concluded that the pipeline is no worse than the other alternatives, they started from the assumption that the Canadian synthetic crude would be refined on the US Gulf Coast, but why make that assumption? There is a far better alternative, and that is to tell Harper that he and his harlots have already destroyed far too much of Canada, so he should take his dirty Tar Sands crude and stick it where the midnight sun never shines.
Regarding Obama, he had nothing to do with the contents of this report. That happened much lower on the food chain. It was prepared by so-called “non-partisan” permanent staffers. Before Obama took office, I warned that Republican moles were burrowing-in. That is, temporary Republican political appointees were switching to permanent “non-partisan” staff positions in all departments. I said that would come back to hurt us over and over again. That was before we moved to WordPress, but here’s a reference from 2009. State was not exempt from that. If there was any high level involvement, it would have been from Hillary Clinton, because Kerry has not been at State long enough to have provided input. Although I will support Hillary if the wins the nomination in 2016, I have to admit that the environment is not her strong suit.
The best we can do at this point is to keep signing the petitions that are there now, and that will be coming, and to personally call the White House at 202-456-1414.