Free Markets, Free People

Keystone XL: Protest Was Never About “Sensitive” Lands

In Nebraska, where environmental groups had protested the construction of the Keystone XL pipeline because it would pass through the “environmentally sensitive” Sand Hills, they are now protesting a proposed solution as well.

The bill is Legislation Bill 1161

The legislation is designed to restart a state review of a pipeline route that avoids Nebraska’s ecologically sensitive Sand Hills region.

Gov. Dave Heineman has indicated that he would sign the bill. He supports getting the Keystone XL pipeline built as quickly as possible.

But, say the environmental groups, this is just not acceptable:

Such eagerness was one of the concerns expressed by the groups. Under LB 1161, the governor would make the final decision on whether to approve a crude-oil pipeline route through the state.

Jane Kleeb of Bold Nebraska said that would be a clear conflict of interest because an agency under the governor — the Nebraska Department of Environmental Quality — would oversee an environmental review of the new route.

Using Kleeb’s logic, Obama had no right to refuse it in the first place because the agencies that conducted the review process for the pipeline at a national level worked for him.

Regardless, the environmentalists intend to try to tie the law up in court:

Kleeb and others said they would prefer the pipeline regulation bill that was passed during last November’s special session, which would put the Nebraska Public Service Commission — an independent agency with elected commissioners — in charge of reviewing the Keystone XL.

Ken Winston of the Sierra Club said he expects a lawsuit to be filed challenging LB 1161’s constitutionality.

Of course Nebraska, as those who’ve followed this story know, is criss-crossed with multiple oil pipelines, none of which have caused the catastrophic environmental problems the environmental groups claim will come with the approval of this pipeline.

The obvious point, of course, is this has never been about “environmentally sensitive” areas.  It has been about stopping this pipeline because it will be carrying crude that comes from an area environmentalists have decided produces “dirty” fuel and that we should be denied its benefit.  For whatever reason they seem to think if they stop this pipeline, the oil sands in Canada they will come from will simply cease to produce.  Of course that’s poppycock.  Canada has already said it has plenty of other customers for its oil, to include China.

So this is the latest in the battle to deny this country a safe and secure fuel source for groundless practical reasons, but instead based in ideology which refuses reality for some asinine utopian fantasy world.  They would deny this country the benefit of 800,000 barrels of oil a day because they have decided we shouldn’t have it.

Yet my guess is they’d also claim to be big proponents of “democracy”.  The only problem, as poll after poll demonstrates, “democracy” firmly backs the construction of the pipeline by huge majorities.

So to hell with it.  It’s off to Plan B as outline by Saul Alinsky – use their own rules against them.

Or, in other words, instead of letting the democratic process work and accept the results, tie it up in court.


Twitter: @McQandO

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20 Responses to Keystone XL: Protest Was Never About “Sensitive” Lands

  • As often revealed in the past, the “enviros” are anti-environment. The Canadian oil WILL come to America in some volume, and it WILL come by some LESS safe method of transport if a pipeline is forestalled. Generally, we know that the most economical solution is also the most environmentally sound solution, and not by accident. Like the Collective in general, the environmental nutbag wing HATES democracy and law, and uses both only as clubs.

  • Much of the tar sand oil will be going to China anyway. As I’ve documented elsewhere on this site, the US does not need this oil—our demand has decreased by 4.5%, and gasoline is our number one export (whereas China’s demand has increased by 8%). If we run such a great risk of losing the contract, why don’t the Chinese just go ahead and buy it from the Canadians? One reason is because of the US’s technological advantages in refining.

    There’s also some dispute—also previously documented on this site—as to the number of people will be employed by this project (a Cornel study placed this figure at as few as 1600 – 6000 temporary jobs). Tar sands oil is different from the bulk of the oil coursing through the mid-western pipelines—it’s filthier and represents more of a risk resulting from a pipeline break or leak.

    • @tadcf What you’ve documented on this site is that you are an economic idiot…who lies a lot.

    • @tadcf The US may not “need” this oil, but it gives the option of not having to pay our less-than-friends in the Middle East for the oil we need.

    • Filthier – go ahead and explain why viscous oil mixed with sand, clay and water is inherently ‘filthier’ than crude from a well. Go ahead and explain why it’s not pre-processed to get it to flow through the pipes at a reasonable flow rate since otherwise it runs like cold molasses. Go ahead and explain why a pipe rupture would necessarily be worse than a train derailment, since they’ll move it by rail if there’s no pipe.
      Go ahead and explain why the government thinks it’s more like 5000-6000 jobs, not 1600-6000.
      You can document all that here so you can relate later how you documented it here.

      • @looker Well you already have wet oil, shale oil, etc in the USA, so you have this magic “filth” at home. Lord knows Mr Tad has no clue about … Well… Anything? Where is Erb? He at least made a pretence of reformulating DNC talking points.

    • @tadcf As to it going to China – it will go where the buyers say it will go, at the time of purchase. If you’re that sure who’s producing, buying, and selling from now till whenever, you’re wasting your time here in posting, you should be using your omnipotence to make a fortune on the markets, and perhaps bend it towards world peace since you’re able to so precisely predict what the future will bring in this single product area.

    • @tadcf One last thing – our demand has gone down, because this Administration, run by bozos, for bozos, has done and is still doing yeoman’s work in destroying the American economy. That will not always hold true, and as our good friends the Muslim Brotherhood might say “That will change in November, if God wills”.

      • @looker That was the part I found most risible: the idea that because demand is down now there is no need to prepare for the future. Though given the mounting, cascading failure of the blue social model, I guess I shouldn’t expect those on the left to give much thought to the future.

        • @Billy Hollis In their non technical world it doesn’t matter. They’ll protest the construction of any new refinery, any new power plant. The idea that you can’t meet next month’s increase in demand with a plant you can’t complete for another 3 years (after permitting and construction) never occurs to them. It’s a generalization I realize, but from what I’ve seen they think it’s all Wal-Mart and they can just run in, buy one off the shelf and have it operational by this evening.

        • @Billy Hollis It doesn’t matter Billy. They expect Whole Foods, Starbucks, and their iPads to function always, no matter what, as if by magic

    • @tadcf “secure supply” is still a little beyond your grasp, isn’t it?

      • @McQandO I suspect he’ll have to consult his talking points to see if they’ve addressed that. But Washing Machine Charlie probably won’t be back today either way.

    • @tadcf

      And exports are bad how? And increasing supply is bad how?

    • What you have documented on this site is that you know nothing at all about either science or economics, but you are well indoctrinated from some bunch of stupid lefty crap. It does not matter where the fule goes because it is completely fungible. What matters is that more supply will keep prices down.

  • One of the spokespersons for said that Saudi Arabia has produced the current carbon problem, but the tar sands in Canada would produce a carbon probem twice as big.

    • @Neo_ Proof that idiots can and will say any damn thing, no matter how risable as a matter of sound, rational understanding. See tadcf; see also “filthy oil”. What a moron.

  • So the whole “ethical” oil thing is already come and gone, sham that it was eh?