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Thursday, November 26, 2015

Keystone XL Cops

The Keystone Cops comedy continues but this is no silent movie. Colorado congressman Mike Coffman claims to lead an effort to call on the president to reconsider his denial of the pipeline. Well, the pipeline does not cross his district so why should he be concerned about the problems this leaky pipe line will bring to those along it route. I will put his press release last to that you can parse his ideas after reading more about the pipeline

We offer several articles for your information. Once you understand the issues, – it means less oil for the United States, it would likely kill as many jobs as it creates, it is an ecological disaster waiting to happen, it means foreign corporations being able to condemn the property of U.S. citizens and more, you will probably agree with us that it is not a good idea and not in the best interests of the nation.

In the interest of full disclosure: Nebraska is my home state. The Sand Hills are some of the most beautiful, pristine grasslands in the world. You can look for miles and not see a sign of civilization and you can imagine how this land looked a century-and-a-half ago when the buffalo roamed. Editor.

In George Zornicks article “Keystone XL Is Dead-Again”in The Nation, he opines that the Republicans are happy that the pipeline has been stopped, temporarily at least, so they can use it as a bludgeon against President Obama.

Meanwhile, real people who will be really affected by the pipeline are very happy over this news. These are not just tree hugging environmentalists and liberals. Nebraska conservatives led the protest and Nebraskans have really begun to question whether their elected officials are serving them or big oil. Read Madeline Ostranders article from The Nation and see about the real concerns of Nebraskans. This is one of the most moving stories I have seen about the pipeline. The Center for Rural Affairs, based in Lyons, Nebraska, also put out a press release praising the President’s decision. You may read that here,

Noah Greenwald wrote in the Huffington Post earlier this week that the President’s decision was a no brainer and gave five reasons why he felt that way.

Those articles appear below, and several more can be found at What do you know about the Keystone Pipeline?  For more disclaimers about the claims of Colorado’s Conservative Cacus, read yesterday’s Coffman & Tipton bash Obama over Keystone

Be informed, learn the truth, make up your own mind.





George Zornick on January 18, 2012 – 5:02pm ET
For the second time in as many months, the Obama administration has rejected the Keystone XL pipeline—a hugely controversial project that would traverse the length of the country from Nebraska to the Gulf of Mexico, carrying heavy and dirty tar sands oil from deep in Canada.
You’ll recall that, following a summer of protests and civil disobedience, the administration announced in November that it was delaying the project for at least a year, until a less disruptive route around a key aquifer in Nebraska could be studied and proposed. (Many believe this delay would kill the project entirely).
But Republicans successfully revived the project during the end-of-year negotiations on the payroll tax cut and unemployment insurance. Democrats desperately wanted these measures, and the final bill included a provision that would force the State Department to issue a decision on Keystone within two months.
Today—less than even one month since the payroll tax cut bill was passed—the State Department announced they were denying the permit. In a statement, President Obama endorsed that decision: “As the State Department made clear last month, the rushed and arbitrary deadline insisted on by Congressional Republicans prevented a full assessment of the pipeline’s impact, especially the health and safety of the American people, as well as our environment.” … Read More     

On the Plains, a Rare Chance at Trans-Partisan Politics 
Madeline Ostrander January 12, 2012

Long before the Occupy movement swept the country—over two years ago—a political revolt began in one of the reddest states in America. Farmers and ranchers in Nebraska, many of whom are long-time conservatives, got angry about the amount of corporate influence in a single political issue that has since captivated the entire state and upset federal politics: the Keystone XL pipeline.Today, the Obama administration announced that it is rejecting the project—which would have carried tar-sands petroleum from Alberta across Nebraska and five other states to the Gulf of Mexico, where it would have been refined and likely shipped overseas. The rejection is a major victory for the environmental movement, which staged a series of protests against the pipeline last fall. The decision comes after months of political ping-pong. The State Department announced this past November that the administration would delay the decision until after the 2012 election. Then in December, Congressional Republicans attached a mandate to the payroll tax cut extension that forced Obama to make his decision about the pipeline by February of this year. Currently, some members of Congress are crafting legislation that would override Obama’s ruling on Keystone XL, though no bill has yet been introduced. But within Nebraska, the pipeline has been about more than partisan squabbling: public sentiment stirred by the pipeline has the potential to remake state politics. … Read More

Keystone XL in the ‘National Interest’? No Way.
by Noah Greenwald
Endangered species program director
Center for Biological Diversity

President Obama’s got a big decision on his plate. Sometime between now and Feb. 21, he has to decide whether the 1,700-mile Keystone XL pipeline — which would deliver dirty tar sands oil from Canada to Texas — is in the “national interest.”

That phrase is at the heart of his decision because it’s an international project that’s primarily under the purview of the State Department. So whether the pipeline “serves the national interest” is the threshold for deciding whether it can move ahead.

The decision should be a no-brainer. Here are five reasons why Keystone XL is not in the national interest:

1. It will dramatically deepen our addiction to climate-killing fossil fuels. Greenhouse gas emissions from tar-sands development are two to three times higher than those from conventional oil and gas operations. That’s exactly the wrong direction for reversing global warming. Scientists tell us we must reduce atmospheric levels of carbon dioxide to 350 parts per million or less. Today, it’s 391 ppm — and Keystone XL would certainly drive that up and worsen the devastating effects of global warming — from rising oceans to melting glaciers to extreme and dangerous weather events — that we’re already seeing around the world.

2. It will spill. The State Department’s review of the project clearly says Keystone XL will spill oil. Not may, but will. … Read More

Coffman Leads Effort to Call on Obama to Reconsider Pipeline

(WASHINGTON) – Today, U.S. Rep. Mike Coffman, R-Aurora, led an effort to urge President Obama to reverse his decision to deny a permit for the Keystone XL pipeline project, a pipeline that would transport crude oil derived from the Athabasca Oil Sands in western Canada nearly 1,700 miles to processing facilities throughout the United States. In a strongly-worded delegation letter co-signed by his fellow Colorado U.S. Reps. Scott Tipton, Cory Gardner, and Doug Lamborn, Coffman called on the Obama Administration to consider the adverse effects the decision will have on Colorado’s economy and national security.

“Colorado exports more to Canada than to any other country, and over 143,000 jobs in Colorado depend on our trade relationship with Canada,” the Colorado Congressmen said in the letter, “Degrading this trade relationship, as the rejection of the Keystone XL Pipeline does, will only negatively affect job growth and the economy.”

The lawmakers also emphasized the potential for the project to create tens of thousands of jobs and to provide a much-needed boost to Colorado’s economy.

“The $7 billion Keystone XL pipeline project is projected to create 20,000 direct jobs beginning immediately upon approval. This is as ‘shovel ready’ as they come,” the lawmakers said in the letter. “Colorado is home to several nationally and internationally respected world class universities, as well as engineering, environmental, water resource, project management, service, and construction companies who would have the opportunity to bid on various parts of the multi-disciplined project.”

On Wednesday, the Obama administration announced that it would not approve the permit for the TransCanada Keystone XL pipeline project because it was “determined not to serve the national interest.” Coffman and his fellow Colorado U.S. Representatives disagree and point out in the letter that all environmental concerns have been addressed.

“TransCanada has re-routed the proposed pipeline around the Nebraska Sandhills, thereby addressing the primary focus of publicly-stated environmental opposition,” the letter states. “Furthermore, all states through which the pipeline passes have now approved the route.”

In the letter, the Colorado U.S Representatives not only highlight the economic benefits of the project, but they also outline how they believe it would greatly benefit our national security interests.

“The project would protect and enhance our energy security, perhaps more than any other action, and increase national security by reducing dependence on unstable and unfriendly oil-producing nations and along unreliable transport routes such as the Strait of Hormuz,” Coffman and his colleagues said in the letter. “If the pipeline is not approved it is likely that Canada will look to transport the oil to the Asian markets, which would have negative commercial, environmental and national security consequences.”

“Reversing your rejection of the Keystone XL pipeline and instead moving towards its timely approval is entirely consistent and aligned with our nation’s goals of energy security, greater energy independence, job and economic growth, and reducing the trade imbalance, national debt and deficit. We should not miss such a unique opportunity for the overall long-term security and well-being of our nation. For this reason, we urge you to reconsider your decision,” the Colorado U.S. Representatives conclude in the letter.

For a text of the letter click here for a PDF.

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