If you think defeating the Keystone XL pipeline will be the end of tar sands pipelines cutting through the heart of the United States, clearly you haven't been doing enough depressing reading like me. While Keystone has hit some speed bumps lately, I wouldn't be at all surprised if it won approval from the Obama administration and their pals.
Regardless of whether or not Keystone XL is approved, there are loads of pipeline plans in the hopper. There is one under way that delivers just slightly less dirty Alberta sludge than Keystone, and since much of this "new" pipeline relies on repurposed natural gas pipe, there are fewer regulatory hurdles.
You may notice a "megaloads" sign in the cartoon (towards the end) and be left scratching your head. In certain parts of the United States and Canada, oil companies are shipping massive equipment destined for the tar sands through towns and along roads that are not meant for huge industrial machinery. These loads can be in the range of 25-feet wide or more, 250-feet long and 30-feet tall.
Oil companies are moving these massive loads along officially designated "Wild and Scenic Rivers" in Idaho (near where parts of my family homesteaded around 1900). While Exxon, Conoco and others attempt to establish industrial corridors through beautiful scenic territory far from any pipeline route, resistance is growing among the locals.
Be sure to dig deeper into these issues, but first, enjoy the cartoon, share, like email and do all that other good webby stuff!
[Tar Sands Timmy]
I'm back! Tar Sands Timmy, here to tell you everything is still comin' up crude-- er, bitumen, er, dirty, sandy, mucky oil gloop that takes loads of energy, death and destruction to get to market . . .
But beautiful crude nonetheless!
And don't worry, the Keystone XL pipeline will happen!
Sure, there's been a little public outcry.
And a little conflict-of-interest problem, with the company the State Department hired to do environmental impact reporting . . .
But how were they to know they were also working for Trans-Canada, the company whose pipeline they were reviewing?
I mean, this is a reputable company who's done these environmental reviews before!
Like for a pipeline in the Caspian Sea they declared safe. Oops!
Or for Exxon Mobil. Oops!
Or for a pipeline project in the Amazon. Oops! Oops! That wasn't-- oops!
Good thing Tar Sands Timmy has a few people working for him on the inside!
And if for some strange, un-American reason, the Keystone XL pipeline doesn't happen-- there are plenty of Keystone clones in the works!
Thanks to my profitable pipeline pals, there's another Keystone happening right under your nose-- and it'll move almost as much crude as Keystone XL.
Making it the first pipeline to get beautiful tar sands gunk all the way from Canada to the Gulf! (And who knows where after that.)
Best part is, Enbridge has plans for five-thousand miles of pipeline!
You know, Enbridge, Incorporated, the company that brought you the largest pipeline spill in the history of the United States!
So don't you worry about Tar Sands Timmy, either way I'll be doing just fine-- (unless you people keep getting in the way.)
Thanks to my corporate pals, oil lobbyists, and political connections-- it'll be comin' up dirty crude for years to come!