While President Obama has dithered on the decision to grant a presidential permit for the XL Keystone Pipeline that would carry Alberta oil from Hardesty, Alberta to the Gulf Coast, Prime Minister Harper said that the delay in the United States has forced Canada to take a different track for its oil.
“I am very serious about selling our oil off this continent, selling our energy products off to Asia. I think we have to do that,” Harper told broadcaster CTV in a year-end interview.
“When I was down in the United States recently it was interesting, I ran into several senior Americans who all said ‘Don’t worry we’ll get Keystone done. You can sell all of your oil to us.’ I said, ‘Yeah we’d love to but I think the problem is now that we’re on a different track.”
Alberta’s Premier Alison Redford made a similar comment on CBC’s Power and Politics yesterday. The pipeline would send crude oil to the United States for refining and redistribution to North American markets, including Canada.
Obama delayed the decision for political reasons, stating that further environmental assessments were needed. The pipeline has been assessed to death for almost three years, with the result that there would be minimum impact on the environment. The last obstacle, which was an aquafer in Nebraska has been overcome with an agreement by TransCanada Pipeline and the Nebraska State Legislature.
The fact is that environmentalists surrounded the White House for weeks and most of their claims have no basis and are outdated. There are pipelines all over the United States, distributing natural gas and oil, including crude oil in Alberta. From a national energy independence perspective this would increase oil obtained from a reliable source, oil that is already imported from the Middle East.
House Republicans recently introduced a bill on the payroll tax extension, which included a measure that would require the pipeline decision to be made within 60 days. Should Obama not approve the pipeline he would have to declare that it is not in the U.S. national interest. A compromise bill, which passed in the Senate 89-10 only extended the tax cuts for 60 days, but included the pipeline decision. House Republicans will vote on the bill this morning. It is expected to be defeated in favour of a bill that would extend the tax cuts for 12 months.
Obama has dithered almost three years on the pipeline issue and then made a political decision to kick the can down the road until after the 2012 election. America needs the oil and the pipeline would create up to 20,000 jobs and infuse billions of dollars into the economy. The number of jobs is being disputed by some. It is clear though that the pipeline construction would create jobs and so would the additional refining capability.
Regardless of the number of jobs the pipeline would create, the energy source is reliable. Hypocritical environmentalists, who left a carbon imprint, the size of a small city during their love fest in Durban, are using oil products daily. Their laptops, iPads, iPhones, etc are all made
of oil products, yet Obama bowed to their protests. Despite the advent of renewable energy, which should be included in a national energy strategey, oil will be around for some time to come.
The finger pointing at Canada and its oilsands by the environmentalist is unwarranted. Canada is number seven in the list of world carbon emissions, trailing China (23.3%), the United States (18.11%), India (5.78%), Russia (5.67%). Japan (4.01%) and Germany (2.61%). In the mix is also the EU (with 27 nations at 24%). Canada’s emissions are 1.8% of the world total. Source: Wikilist
President Obama and his environmentalist base need to stop the hypocrisy, accept the fact that oil will be around to fuel the economy for some time and approve the pipeline. The Unions can’t wait for the jobs to be created. If the dithering on the pipeline continues, the oil will be sold to Asian markets. The Prime Minister of Canada is serious. He has called this project a “no brainer.”
Supporters say the plan to bring oil from Canada’s tar sands to the United States is the ultimate shovel-ready job creation project and would spur the hiring of thousands of workers.
Environmental activists fear an accident along the 1,700-mile (2,700-kilometer) pipeline extension would be potentially disastrous for aquifers in central U.S. Great Plains states.
Others oppose the multibillion-dollar project because exploiting the tar sands requires energy that generates a large volume of greenhouse gases that scientists blame for global warming.
The Obama administration has ordered an extra environmental assessment of a possible new route through Nebraska, which could delay a final decision until after next November’s election. The Province