Americans must speak out against Keystone

March 11, 2013

There are about to be 830,000 barrels of the dirtiest, most inefficient oil piped clear through our country from Canada, straight over an active seismic earthquake zone, through Native American reservations, and all the way to Texas via the Keystone XL pipeline. President Barack Obama is being pressed hard to finally submit to signing off on this tar sands oil project; however, this would be a step in the wrong direction for addressing the issue of climate change. For what reason would our nation be furthering our worldwide dependence on oil when there are countless effective solar and wind projects proposed that will consequently be disregarded? Is it because our nation's officials are unaware of the climate crisis, including the ever increasing 6 million acres annually burned due to wildfires, severe droughts, and clean water shortage? Is our government too incompetent to make the switch to safe, reliable energy sources?

No, I think the corporate and political leaders of our nation are simply too hooked on the money to put the oil pipe down and rehabilitate themselves. A common misconception is that this oil pipeline will somehow benefit the common American as well. This is a lie. It isn't going to make gas prices go down, and there will only be about 40 permanent jobs total that actually come of it. Furthermore, much if the oil will be exported to other countries.

Earlier this month, the State Department released a report that did not address the climate impacts of the Keystone pipeline. Scientists are outraged, pointing out flaws and omissions of truth in the report. NASA's leading scientist on climate bluntly stated that the tar sand pipeline means "game over for the climate."

With that said, America, we have been given just 45 days from the date of the report's release to make ourselves heard and reject the Keystone pipeline plan. I am one of the 45,000 people who attended the Climate Rally March in Washington D.C. last month to demand the cancellation of this project that President Obama had formerly postponed in an effort to save the climate. Now, a misguided mob of Americans, clutching their outlandishly flawed reports, has Mr. Obama cornered to sign off on the plan. If you were there at the rally, thank you. If you were unable to attend, now is your chance to join this historical movement, beginning with pulling just one of the greasy rugs out from under King Oil's feet.

Petitions to stop the Keystone pipeline may be signed at almost any environmental activist websites. This issue is huge. Some include the Sierra Club or Write an e-mail to the White House or call the White House. Whatever you do, speak out now.

Maria Clark, Catonsville

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