President Obama is expected to make his final decision on whether to approve the controversial Keystone XL oil pipeline in the coming weeks.
Activists have fought hard for years to stop Big Oil from building this pipeline, which would pump tar sands oil from Canada across the US and to ports in the Gulf of Mexico.
With the clock winding down on this important decision it has become clear that meaningful resistance to the Keystone XL pipeline will not come from inside the Obama administration: The State Department’s recent review of the project amazingly concluded that increasing access to the ‘third-largest proven crude oil reserve in the world‘ would not have a significant effect on global warming.
But eight other federal agencies have until May to weigh in on the State Department’s report, at which point the secretary of State will make a recommendation before President Obama makes the final decision. We need to use this time to press the President to oppose this project.
Not only does this pipeline pose dangers to the communities it crosses, but the implications for the environment at-large are severe and well-documented, despite what the State Department’s review proclaims.
According to a broader study by the non-profit Carbon Tracker initiative, through 2050, “KXL-enabled production” of oil would produce as much as 5.3 billion metric tons of carbon dioxide-equivalent. That would be the equivalent of constructing 46 new coal-fired power plants.
Firedoglake has opposed Keystone XL since it was first proposed. Our activists have sent petitions, launched phone calls and even been arrested protesting outside the White House – all in an effort to stop this dirty, dangerous project from becoming a reality.
So far these efforts have succeeded in forcing the president to delay approval and continue punting the decision further down the road. But now it appears he can punt no longer.