Representative Henry A. Waxman and Senator Sheldon Whitehouse spoke up about the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline this week, urging the State Department to reevaluate the pipeline’s impact on climate. They challenged the State Department’s climate impact analysis and asserted what we already know is true - that the dirty project would have a substantial negative impact on climate. You can read the full letter here.
The EPA has already criticized the State Department’s report, which is being touted by the oil industry, saying it should be more “complete and accurate” in assessing Keystone XL’s devastating impact on climate. And it’s no wonder the oil industry is pushing this flawed report – it was drafted with the help of a consultant that previously worked for TransCanada, the company behind Keystone XL.
The letter by Waxman and Whitehouse is particularly significant in the wake of President Obama’s climate address. In his speech, the President made the climate impact of the pipeline the primary criteria for deciding whether or not to approve the project.
The oil companies are fighting hard, trying to make you believe the climate impacts of Keystone XL are minimal at best. But as Waxman and Whitehouse point out, the science and the economics say otherwise. It would take 37 million cars to equal the additional carbon pollution that Keystone XL would emit if it were approved.
We thank Waxman and Whitehouse for continuing their leadership and speaking up on Keystone once again, and join them in conveying their message: “Reject Keystone XL.” We are especially hopeful that President Obama will deny the project after tying approval to the pipeline’s impacts on climate. The President has set a standard that the oil industry just can’t meet, and the State Department should reevaluate Keystone’s climate impact to reflect the true negative impacts that Keystone XL will have on our environment.