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In the Washington Post

Lamar Smith, a Republican, represents Texas’s 21st District in the U.S. House and is chairman of the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology.
He gets right down to avoiding the truth, but, but, the pipeline, you know, just sits there.
The State Department has found that the pipeline will have minimal impact on the surrounding environment and no significant effect on the climate
Because the pipe line will be buried deep enough to avoid the effects of climate change, from the link
The pipeline would be buried deep enough to avoid surface impacts of climate changes (freeze-thaw cycles, fires, and temperature extremes).
He then goes down the road that there is no point in the US of A doing anything because well you know, other people are worse.
Among the facts that are clear, however, are that U.S. emissions contribute very little to global concentrations of greenhouse gas, and that even substantial cuts in these emissions are likely to have no effect on temperature.
17.2% of the total is so, you know, not very much...
In about 2007, China did pass the United States in putting the greatest amount of CO2 into the air per year, but China’s economic boom only got started recently and they still have a couple of decades to go (if there are no drastic changes) before they catch up with the United States in the total cumulative amount of heat-trapping CO2 they will have been piling up in the air.
Personally speaking, our household doesn't contribute much to the overall total, so really we shouldn't have to change our behavior.

So what the hey, carry on.

Now the document he uses to support his statement is for the impact of the project itself not for the material it is carrying final use, nor for its primary extraction. Conveniently forgotten is the pile of toxic garbage left after final processing.

He avoids current research on tar sands.

James Hansen notes

“We know we're going to get more oil out of these conventional sources,” said Hansen. “If we also introduce the unconventional ones, there is no solution other than geo- engineering,” he said, referring to deliberate measures designed to alter the climate. Hansen is now a professor at Columbia University in New York.
I am glad that I am not the only one noticing this bullshit

Scientific American

In a draft assessment of the proposed Keystone XL pipeline, consultants for the U.S. State Department judged that building it would have no significant impact on greenhouse gas emissions. Why? Because the analysts assumed the tar sands oil would find a way out with or without the new pipeline.

Avoiding the truth is what Republicans do best.

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