Critics also claim the pipeline would damage a water aquifer beneath Nebraska. But Keystone's planned pathway has been specifically rerouted to avoid such an outcome. And the pipeline has been fully approved by the relevant Nebraskan authorities. The administration's decision not to approve Keystone was clearly a deep bow to radical environmentalists. Fully 53 senators from both parties are urging the White House to approve the project.
Ironically, blocking the pipeline promises to increase, not decrease, global carbon emissions. If Canada can't sell its oil to the United States, it will sell to China, which isn't subject to the same restrictions on energy use and emissions as facilities here. China's refineries generate significantly higher volumes of emissions than American ones.
Blocking Keystone XL is an affront to America's energy consumers and energy producers. That insult would, unfortunately, add to Obama's war on coal, his push to federalize hydraulic fracturing, and the wasted “green energy” handouts for the wind, solar, ethanol and electric car industries.
The Obama administration should stand up to those special-interest groups more concerned with fundraising than good global citizenship. America's middle class should truly come first with a permit to build.
Bradley is CEO of the Institute for Energy Research and author, most recently, of “Edison to Enron: Energy Markets and Political Strategies” (John Wiley & Sons). He blogs at www.masterresource.org.