President Barack Obama has rejected the Keystone XL pipeline after seven years of foot-dragging on whether or not the oil pipeline would be in the national interest. Obama says approving Keystone would exacerbate global warming.
Obama will cite global warming concerns as his reason to reject the project, sources have told several news outlets. Obama’s move comes just weeks ahead of a United Nations climate meeting in Paris to hash out a new global climate treaty.
“President Obama’s decision on Keystone XL is not a surprise,” Tom Pyle, president of the free market Institute for Energy Research, told The Daily Caller News Foundation in an emailed statement. “As we’ve said all along, the president never had any intention of approving the pipeline.”
The Obama administration has ramped up its PR campaign to show the world it’s serious about cutting carbon dioxide emissions to fight global warming. The president’s rejection of Keystone XL is likely meant to be another show of how serious he is about cutting CO2 emissions.
Keystone XL has become a major political football for the 2016 presidential race. Every Democratic candidate is opposed to the project, while every Republican contender wants to see the pipeline built.
Democrats and environmentalists ramped up the pressure on Obama to kill the pipeline this week. Pipeline opponents argue Keystone will contribute to global warming and cause oil spills along its route.
“It’s about a tone and it’s about an attitude,” Arizona Democratic Rep. Raúl Grijalva, co-chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, told The Hill. “For the decision to be pending doesn’t hurt. But making a decision — rejecting it — I think, sets a tone and an attitude about the seriousness of this nation and, more important, the commitment that the president is making here.”
Interestingly enough, Obama’s own State Department dispelled many of the myths promoted by environmentalists that Keystone would harm the environment. The department’s review of Keystone found the project would have no impact on global warming or the environment.
Obama’s decision also comes after the State Department denied TransCanada’s request to suspend their application for Keystone to be approved. CNN reported Secretary of State John Kerry recommended Obama reject the project.
Let’s be clear, the president isn’t only rejecting a pipeline,” Pyle said. “He’s rejecting the will of the American people, he’s rejecting abundant and affordable energy, and he’s rejecting trade with one of our closest allies. This president is as out of touch with the American people as much as he’s in lockstep with national environmental pressure groups.”
Keystone XL would bring oil sands from Alberta, Canada to U.S. Gulf Coast refineries.
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