What is the Keystone pipeline controversy about?

  1. GA Anderson profile image81
    GA Andersonposted 6 years ago

    What is the Keystone pipeline controversy about?

  2. Doc Snow profile image95
    Doc Snowposted 6 years ago

    In my opinion, power politics.  That's not to say that there aren't important matters involved, too.

    Environmentalists--of whom I suppose I am one--don't want Keystone because we feel that making a big investment in a very dirty energy source is not the right way to go.  Feelings about that are very strong indeed--you may remember that there were environmentalists picketing in front of the White House; NASA scientist Dr. James Hansen, who is one of the leading authorities on climate change, was arrested in one of the protests.

    Environmentalists, you may have noticed, are more aligned with the President than with the Republicans.  (I think it's fair to say that environmentalists are not very welcome any more in many GOP circles--especially the 'Tea-partyish' ones.)

    On the other hand, many unionists are largely in favor of Keystone because construction could create a lot of jobs for their membership.

    Unionists, you may have noticed, are also more aligned with the President than with Republicans.  (In fact, I think it's fair to say that most GOP members never met a union they liked--see Gov. Scott Walker of Wisconsin for exhibit "A.")

    Keystone, therefore, put the President in the uncomfortable position of having to alienate one or another of two important groups of supporters--in an election year, no less.  When he deferred the decision, he dodged that particular bullet.

    The Republican attempts to deflect that bullet back at him (so to speak) are ingenious.  (To be fair, most of them ideologically favor Keystone anyway, so if they can force it through, they will also think that that is a good thing.)

    So, IMO, it's mostly power politics.  But I hope that Keystone doesn't get built; I truly believe it is not the kind of energy investment that we should be making.  Transforming our economy to a sustainable basis is a big job, and we are overdue in getting serious about it.  Keystone would be a big step backward.

  3. Dennis AuBuchon profile image83
    Dennis AuBuchonposted 6 years ago

    I feel we need the pipeline for the jobs it will create and the impact on the economy.  Granted there have been or are some environmental concerns and they need to be addressed if they already have not been.  This piple line project has been in the planning stages for years and to reject the project after years of data has been collected does not make sense.

    Several states have established agreements related to the route of the pipeline and based on the information everything was in place it only needed to be approved.  I agree that we need to look at alternative sources of energy and I was happy that some nuclear energy plants have been approved.  Developing alternative energy resources is years in the future and use of the piple line would enhance and boost the economy.

    I understand the focus of environmentalists to some extent in wanting to make sure there are ample protections and/or plans to deal with any environmental problems.  Limiting the use of our own natural resources is counterproductive to energy independence.  We need to allow the development/construction of the pipeline before an agreement is made with China which is in the works from news reports.

    We also have a large deposit of oil and gas reserves of our own yet the use of these reserves has been hampered by many things not the least of which is government red tape and environmentalists.