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Keystone XL Pipeline

This is a letter that I wrote to Florida Senator Rubio. It outlines the research that I have done on the Keystone pipeline. The effects of oil spills are just part of the objections to this pipeline, it also does not live up to the projected jobs nor increase our national security. There is a lot of misinformation regarding this issue and I applauded President Obama for delaying the pipeline and hope that it is denied.

Thank you for replying to my petition regarding the proposed expansion of the Keystone XL pipeline.

It seems that you have been misled regarding the proposed expansion of the Keystone XL pipeline. In your email, you stated that the pipeline will “provide America with a safe and reliable supply of energy resources.”

The pipeline is anything but safe. TransCanada has a record of using inferior piping imported from India. Between 2000 and 2009, pipelines have had 2,794 significant spills and have been responsible for 161 fatalities. In 2010, 1 million gallons of crude oil spilled into the Kalamazoo River, 275,000 gallons spilled in a suburb of Chicago and 126,000 gallons spilled in Neche, North Dakota.

The proposed route of Phase 4 of the Keystone pipeline would run over and, in places, run into the Ogallala Aquifer. This aquifer supplies drinking water for millions of Americans and provides 30% of the irrigation needs of farms that feed the nation. By backing the expansion without proper review, it is gambling with the future of those affected Americans.

You also stated in your reply that the pipeline would create 20,000 jobs. Data supplied by TransCanada to the US government reflected 2,500 to 4,650 temporary construction jobs. Many of those jobs would be from lower paid labor from outside the United States. In its new estimates of jobs created, they are using what is called “job-years.” Job-years counts each year that one employee is needed on the project as a separate employee. For example, hiring one employee over 5 years is counted as 5 employees. This is a misleading calculation.

You referred to the 830,000 barrels of crude being pumped to Gulf coast refineries. Much of this crude has been contracted to six companies and five of those are foreign companies and only one US company. Valero, the U.S. company, has a business plan that is geared toward export.
This export strategy is even detailed to investors in their public documents. One of the terminals of Keystone XL pipeline and where Valero has a refinery is Port Arthur, Texas. Port Arthur is within a Foreign Trade Free Zone. This allows Valero to export without paying taxes on the refined crude.

In summary, the pipeline has been proven to be unsafe. It will not provide the jobs promised and will not lessen the nation’s dependence on foreign oil.

I am disappointed that you and your staff did not do the research on this issue.

Gregory Colvin

Tar sand oil is one of the most toxic energy sources.

One Response to “Keystone XL Pipeline”

  • Cody Ausburn says:

    oil spills are always bad for the environment, we should avoid them as much as possible. ;

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