Congress, Obama should just say no to pipeline

The Gazette Opinion Staff
Published: February 22 2014 | 12:37 pm - Updated: 29 March 2014 | 3:59 am in

TransCanada (Canadian oil corporation) will construct and manage the Keystone XL Pipeline. Their goal: to be the number one energy company. American farmland will be condemned in the states of Montana, South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas to accommodate their crude oil pipeline.

Tar sands oil (oil sands) is the dirtiest oil in the world. It emits three times the amount of carbon as conventional oil. The extraction process requires three barrels of water for every barrel of tar sands. Most of the used water becomes toxic sludge which is dumped into large tailing ponds.

There is no process to dispose of this toxic waste, so it eventually can leak into water supplies.

TransCanadaís first Keystone pipeline built in the U.S. spilled 14 times in the first year. Enbridge had 1 million gallons of tar sands leak from a pipeline into the Kalamazoo River. Four years later, itís still not clean. What will happen to the Ogallala Aquifer when the Keystone pipeline leaks?

Why should U.S. farmers lose their land and Americans sacrifice their water supply for a foreign oil company to produce toxic waste and carbon intensive oil? For job creation? The U.S. State Department report estimates only 35 permanent jobs (after the temporary construction jobs) will be created.

America has all the risk and TransCanada becomes No. 1 in energy? With less than 20 percent of this oil expected to stay in the U.S., President Obama and Congress should just say no to the Keystone XL Pipeline.

Cheryl Valenta

Cedar Rapids


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