It’s no surprise that the oil companies are at it again. I mean, after all, we’re talking about a project that could make a select few billions of dollars — that’s right, billions with a “b.” But, the question is, at whose expense?
Well, if you ask me, it’s us. The average person who: works a nine to five; snowboards, skis, or surfs weekends; and enjoys a nature hike or two throughout the year… that’s who.
Now, even though our president has repeatedly said he will VETO any bill that comes across his desk regarding the Keystone XL, the pressure is building. Like a massive storm covering a canyon or giant swell hitting reef, this project has the potential to become a monster that nobody is willing or even able to tame. For those of you who are not aware, the proponents of the pipeline plan to construct this monstrosity through some of the most pristine lands in the nation, touting all the amazing benefits that will come along with it. But there are several groups out there that want nothing to do with it. In fact, they have researched the proponents’ claims only to find they are 100% false. Okay, so maybe not 100%, but pretty damn close.
Myth 1: Less Pollution
Pipeline could spur expanded production of dirty tar sands. Keystone XL would increase U.S. emissions by the equivalent of up to four million cars annually. The nonpartisan congressional research service found in a survey of published literature that because tar sands oil is more carbon intensive than conventional crude oil, the Keystone XL pipeline would increase U.S. greenhouse gas emissions by the equivalent of “approximately 558,000 to 4,061,000 passenger vehicles” annually.
Myth 2: More Permanent Jobs
A report by the Cornell University Global Labor Institute stated that the pipeline “will create no more than 2,500 to 4,650 temporary direct construction jobs for two years, according to TransCanada’s own data supplied to the State Department.” It estimated that “the new permanent U.S. pipeline jobs in the U.S. number as few as 50.” The report also argued that the Perryman Group study ignored the negative consequences of the pipeline, which could lead to more jobs lost than would be created.
Myth 3: Lower Gas Prices
Energy experts agree that the Keystone XL pipeline would have little, if any, impact on gasoline prices. UC Berkeley’s Severin Borenstein told Media Matters that the pipeline would “bring additional oil to the world market, starting around 2020. The effect on oil prices then will be minuscule, the effect in the next couple years nonexistent.” Michael Levi, an energy expert at the Council of Foreign Relations, agreed that the impact of Keystone XL on gas prices “would be very small.” Even Ray Perryman, the economist hired by TransCanada to assess the economic benefits of the pipeline, said the effect would be “modest” and likely “swamped by the day-to-day factors that impact market prices.”
You see, even though some tout this project as the savior that will put America ahead of the race, the facts don’t lie. Truth is, we are being fed a bunch of bullshit paid for by the elite while they continue to ravage our planet in the name of profit.