Keystone Pipeline study: We must kill the environment to save it

Brought to you by the corporate lobbyists of Big Oil, the new US State Department “draft” environmental impact study on the Keystone Pipeline shrugs its shoulders and says “it’s awful but what else can we do?”

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 equiavalent to about 626,000 passenger vehicles operating for a full year.

As our own Gaius Publius wrote on AMERICAblog in 2011, the Koch brothers will be the big winners with this eventual cave-in by Obama.

Well, there’s a surprise. Obama’s worst enemy, and the climate’s as well, the ever-famous Koch Brothers and Koch Industries, are positioned to be big winners if (when) the Keystone Tar Sands pipeline is approved.

Think about it this way — that pipeline isn’t carrying toxic sludge through two provinces and 12 states to Texas. It’s carrying money into the dirty pockets of two of the most power-mad, driven billionaires on the planet. (Did I mention that their daddy was a John Birch Society founder?)

The Koch Brothers are deep into the Tar Sands project, and will be huge beneficiaries of the Keystone XL Pipeline. They own sludge-oil (called “heavy oil” by insiders), refineries, even regional pipelines for distribution.

Why the Obama administration feels the need to give in so many times to people who both hate him and hate America is a question that needs to be answered.

The pipeline certainly won’t benefit Americans in the long run, since it will speed up climate change and cause more health-related problems due to pollution. But it’s just a hiccup, right? Who really cares if more people get sick when there are profits to be had!

Oil sands, tar sands, in Alberta, Canada - Keystone Pipeline

Oil sands in Alberta, via Shutterstock

The decision to press forward with this polluting pipeline has been predicted for years, though the administration has been touchy about it all along. They know that it’s highly unpopular with anyone who cares about climate change and the environment, also known as the Democratic base.

It’s nothing but excuses from both Obama and the Republicans in favor of the Keystone pipeline. The Republicans, to their credit, at least don’t try and hide from the fact that they want the pipeline. The White House plays the game of pretending as though they’re not really in favor of it, but then they don’t really do much to stop it.

Then there’s this:

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.

If the US were dumping as much money into alternative energies as they do into propping up Big Oil, it would be easier to say that they tried to address environmental issues in a serious way, but that doesn’t happen.  It’s false to say that there are no alternatives to the Keystone Pipeline since we’ve never really had a serious effort to try other alternatives.

Other countries pump money into tidal energy, and solar (as we see with Germany), but the US continues to let Big Oil make the rules. And Big Oil only cares about profits.

Sorry Washington, but this doesn’t cut it.

An American in Paris, France. BA in History & Political Science from Ohio State. Provided consulting services to US software startups, launching new business overseas that have both IPO’d and sold to well-known global software companies. Currently launching a new cloud-based startup. Full bio here.

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24 Responses to “Keystone Pipeline study: We must kill the environment to save it”

  1. I didn’t realize a software consultant with a BA in political science had more environmental science qualifications then the US State Department does?

    Oh, I forgot; the State Department report was bought out by big oil. Blast Obama and his conservative flunkies!

  2. Jesus Christ in an oil slick, who in hell approved the original route in the 1st place?

    Just goes to show ya what these people will do to make a buck until a public outcry shames them into relenting.

  3. ezpz says:

    Obama is not ‘giving in’ to ANYONE. This is HIS agenda – always was!

    He simply postponed the bogus state dept report and his rubber stamping it until after the election.

    Please – there IS a difference between ‘caving’ and wanting the same things that *they* want.

  4. josephebacon says:

    President Neville Chamberlain appeases again…

  5. confusion says:

    Koch’s will finally do the right thing if we shower them with love :-) :-) :-) :-) :-) :-) :-) :-) :-) :-)

  6. karmanot says:


  7. karmanot says:

    They will Sioux in court.

  8. karmanot says:


  9. hollywoodstein says:

    Kind of reminds one of the public option doesn’t it?

  10. hollywoodstein says:


  11. hollywoodstein says:

    To the Bat Google!

  12. hollywoodstein says:

    yeah, I’m pretty certain that the governor and the senators saw that there was opposition coalescing from the Left and the Right, and the best way to diffuse it was to remove what polling showed was the biggest issue, the aquifer so they made them change it.
    So now the path skirts the Sand Hills. Still crosses the Platte.
    Still a bad idea.

  13. Bill_Perdue says:

    I hadn’t heard.

    Are they going to bypass Nebraska entirely? The Ogallala Aquifer, connected to others in a system called the High Plains Aquifer, runs across virtually the entire distance of Nebraska from east to west.

    A spill would likely pollute the entire system faster if it occurred over the Sand Hills and slower if it occurred east or west of there.A spill, combined with climate change and overuse of the aquifer the danger of a disaster of epic proportions, making the Dust Bowl of the 1930’s seem like child’s play.

  14. hollywoodstein says:


  15. hollywoodstein says:

    I thought the Nebraska Senators changed the path to knock the legs out from under the Ogalla aquifer objection?

  16. hollywoodstein says:

    Hmm, I’m beginning to think that those cranks who get on the tubez and rail that we don’t have a two party system, but a one money party system may not be cranks after all.

  17. karmanot says:

    I (hate) Obama, but he has yet to give in to any of my needs.

  18. Bill_Perdue says:

    Obama, like all Democrat and Republican politicians, is a bought and paid for political prostitute.

    Keystone virtually assures the further degradation of the ecology of the Midwest and the likely poisoning of large parts of the aquifers on which much of our food supply is absolutely dependent. The Keystone pipeline, which became operational in 2010, brings about 435,000 barrels of crude oil per day from Albert, Canada, to refineries in Texas. Proposed additions to the pipeline would up that delivery to about 700,000 to 900,000 barrels per day. One of the controversies is that part of the additions to the pipeline would pass over the northeast edge of the Ogallala aquifer in the Sand Hills of Nebraska.

  19. Drew2u says:

    No petitions on “We the People” about the Keystone XL pipeline?

  20. hollywoodstein says:

    Done deal.

  21. “Why the Obama administration feels the need to give in so many times to
    people who both hate him and hate America is a question that needs to be
    No, it doesn’t. It’s just a fact and it will continue to be a fact, like gravity. You don’t need to understand gravity to know that you will fall if you step off the roof of your house. Similarly, if you rely on Obama or count on Obama with respect to stopping climate catastrophe, you will be disappointed. Period.

  22. kingstonbears says:

    Let’s hope that the next federal election up here sees the Conservatives defeated and the Liberals or, heaven forbid, the New Democrats winning. Then let’s see what influence the Koch Brothers have. This whole project doesn’t have the support of the majority of Canadians either.

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