President Barack Obama says he promotes job creation. And he says he promotes environmental issues. Labor unions support the Keystone XL pipeline because of the jobs it would create. But environmentalists and anti-Big Oil groups oppose its extension. So Obama now finds himself between a rock and a hard place. Both groups, labor unions and environmentalists, are very big Obama supporters. What now is Obama to do? On Thursday, November 10, 2011, Obama dodged a sensitive situation by deferring the decision on extending TransCanada's Keystone XL Pipeline. Yesterday Obama punted. He delayed the decision by supporting the State Department's move to "seek additional information about the Keystone XL Pipeline proposal." Russ Girling, TransCanada's president and CEO, says, "Keystone XL is shovel-ready."
Obama Passes Decision To Clinton
The State Department announced a review of alternative routes before deciding whether to approve the Keystone XL pipeline. White House spokesman Jay Carney announced the project's fate rests with the State Department. "This is a decision that will be made by the State Department," Carney told reporters. Because Obama is Hillary's boss, he will make Clinton take the Keystone XL hit.
Jobs vs Environmentalism
TransCanada Corporation, the Keystone XL project owner, estimates that 20,000 jobs can be created from the pipeline itself over the two-year project development period. Further, local businesses will benefit from the 118,000 jobs that will be produced along the pipeline route.
Bill McKibben, founder of 350.org said, "If we go ahead and build this stupid pipeline, there is no way that we will ever in this country be able to ask anyone, in China or anyplace else, to do the right thing on climate." James Hansen, climate scientist, told the rally in Washington D.C. that the tar sands are the "critical juncture" in our struggle against "fossil fuel addiction." Peter Wilk, executive director of Physicians for Social Responsibility, said that the pipeline will, "deepen our dependency on oil, contributing to ever worsening climate chaos. Extreme weather events of the past year are not mere coincidence. They are part of an alarming pattern of worsening hurricanes, heat waves, snow storms, flooding..."
As always, I invite readers who differ with me to offer specific links to refute points made in this article. Who knows, after reading your links I may see things more clearly.