The State Department's Final Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS) only came out late Friday afternoon. But by Monday, as noted on Twitter, Bill McKibben's final count of NoKXL vigils came to 280 in 49 states. If the president was listening, he will have heard a unifying message that we don't want this pipeline because it fails the President's climate test.
Seeing beautiful pictures, hearing inspiring reports from #nokxl vigils across the continent tonight. This is how movements build!— Bill McKibben (@billmckibben) February 4, 2014
People on both sides of the aisle are weighing in on what the President's decision will be regarding the Keystone Pipeline. It's easy to let fear, anger and frustration take over with so much at stake. But a few days after the release of the State Department's report, people are beginning to look at this a little more positively. Michael Brune, fellow Kossack and executive director of the Sierra Club, writes that there are numerous reasons for President Obama to reject the Keystone Pipeline and send a clear message that the United States is committed to clean energy.
Biased as it is, though, the report sets the stage for President Obama to reject this dirty, dangerous manifestation of Big Oil's greed, by abandoning the contention in earlier drafts that KXL would have no significant impact on climate. Instead, it concludes that the pipeline would contribute the equivalent of an additional 6 million cars on the road to annual greenhouse gas emissions."The verdict is in: Keystone XL fails President Obama's climate test." Tell President Obama to keep his pledge to reject the pipeline… because the project would "significantly exacerbate the problem of carbon pollution."
Frances Beinecke, President of Natural Resources Defense Council, says the review gives President Obama everything he needs to reject the Keystone XL pipeline.
Most significantly, the State Department reported that the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline could accelerate climate change by pumping more carbon pollution into our air. The surge in pollution would be similar to putting up to 5.7 million extra cars on the road, the review said.Congressman Mike Honda (CA-17) on Facebook:
The pipeline fails the climate test President Obama said he would use to evaluate this project. It’s time to reject it once and for all.
...But lost in those reports is that in the FEIS, the U.S. Department of State acknowledged for the first time that #KeystoneXL could accelerate #climatechange. With climate change posing one of the greatest threats to our nation today and in the future, President Obama should strongly consider this finding as he decides whether the project is truly in our national interest.
Note: if you live in or around Silicon Valley, please contact Glen The Plumber to join Silicon Valley Kossacks. We will use this group to support Mike Honda in his reelection campaign. Follow New Day for upcoming events.
For more on the Keystone XL political decision, see Meteor Blades diary today, Former Energy Secretary Steven Chu concedes the obvious: Keystone XL a political decision
noise of rain documents Overpass Light Brigade, KXL Night of Action. The Coalition Builds!
It was cold tonight. So cold that batteries start to get weird, that cameras quit working, that you stand amazed when over 100 people turn out to protest dirty oil, the scraping of the Canadian Shield, the delivery of toxic sludge to an international market for the rich to get richer. The Overpass Light Brigade brought the "sidewalk soapbox" out tonight; our portable PA system that allowed for spirited chants which kept us warm. We held the sign KXL = CLIMATE CRISIS, having decided to focus on what it is and what it will do rather than the political question of who will approve or reject it. We even had the first DIY Drone Brigade action: a video drone as part of the citizen produced media circus, rising into the air over the streets, almost swatted down by a passing city bus, capturing entirely new video views. Did I say it was cold? It was so cold that the drone camera couldn't even focus!Keystone XL Pledge of Resistance
Taking the KXL Pledge of Resistance is an important decision for any activist to make. The only thing stopping me from making this pledge is the promise I made to my daughter not to get arrested. I do feel strong enough in my convictions to be arrested, and would happily do so along side Meteor Blades, but in the end, I promised my husband I would keep the promise I made to my daughter.
This assessment was a vehicle for the White House to test the waters and see if the public will stand by, and buy this false and cynical argument that the tar sands will just get burned anyway. That while NASA's chief climate scientist's assertion that Keystone XL will spell 'game over' for the climate may be true,3 it is essentially irrelevant. That we should let the bankers and the oil companies profit while the planet inevitably burns.
Well, we won't. And so, that day reminded us of something else, too: Those two weeks in August of 2011, when the peaceful and dignified arrest of 1,253 people over two weeks at President Obama's front door effectively stopped what was considered a virtually guaranteed presidential approval of Keystone XL. There is still time to convince President Obama to change his mind and reject Keystone XL.
As 6pm on the West Coast approaches as this blog is being published, another wave of vigils is about to begin. But one thing is already clear tonight: the movement to stand up against Big Oil, dirty tar sands, and disastrous pipeline projects is strong, determined, and beautiful.
These vigils were organized just 72 hours after the final environmental impact statement for the Keystone XL pipeline was released by the State Department.
Lee Fang, of The Nation, just published this a few minutes ago: Canada Quietly Funded Researchers Behind ‘Independent’ Report Boosting Keystone XL
The heavily redacted contract, a version of which can be found here, provides $325,000 from the government of Alberta to IHS CERA. In addition, public budget documents from Alberta reveal that taxpayers in Canada have provided IHS with over $545,426 in payments over the last year for energy related work.
The Alberta government has been one of the most aggressive proponents of the pipeline. Last year, Alberta retained two D.C. lobbying firms with strong ties to Secretary of State John Kerry, Mehlman Vogel Castagnetti and Rasky Baerlein Strategic Communications, to push for speedy approval of the Keystone XL.
Notably, even Jackie Forrest, one of the co-authors of the 2013 IHS CERA report, claimed previously that without the Keystone XL, oil sands development "could stall for lack of new demand." Contradicting her most recent report, Forrest told the Oil & Gas Journal that, “based on our view of growth in Canadian oil sands and tight oil production, over the next 5 years North America will need both the Keystone XL and the Enbridge projects in order to create enough takeaway capacity to prevent bottlenecks."
Kitchen Table Kibitzing is a community series for those who wish to share part of the evening around a virtual kitchen table with kossacks who are caring and supportive of one another. So bring your stories, jokes, photos, funny pics, music, and interesting videos, as well as links—including quotations—to diaries, news stories, and books that you think this community would appreciate. Readers may notice that most who post diaries and comments in this series already know one another to some degree, but newcomers should not feel excluded. We welcome guests at our kitchen table, and hope to make some new friends as well.