Keystone XL pipeline could lead to irreversible environmental damage

If decision making was a competition, the U.S. government wouldn’t even be allowed to enter. A decision on the Keystone XL Pipeline, which was proposed in 2008, has still not been made.

The Keystone XL Pipeline is a project proposed by TransCanada that would create a roughly 1,200 mile crude oil pipeline that would stretch from Hardisty, Alberta to Steele City, Nebraska and eventually connect to the Gulf Coast.

Supporters of the pipeline say it is a critical infrastructure project for the energy security of the US and would also strengthen the American economy. The cost would be roughly $5 billion but it would create around 42,000 direct and indirect jobs nationwide. They also say the project has the potential to add $172 billion to America’s gross domestic product by 2035 and will create an additional $1.8 million person years of employment in the U.S. over the next 22 years.

Those that are against the pipeline say that the project could potentially devastate the environment and those effects would be irreversible.

Then there are the politicians. They’re not sure whether they want to approve or deny the project, they would rather sit back and watch each side fight in out against each other so they can figure out which decision would benefit them the most in terms of funding and votes.

The project was proposed in 2008 and then became a political issue during the 2012 presidential election and still nothing has come about. The Obama administration is now believed to be putting off making a decision on it so that they it will have to be delayed until the November mid-term elections. In the end, it’s all about the Democrats trying to keep as many seats in the Senate as possible and controlling it. It is a tough decision for the Obama administration though because some Democrats from oil rich states are in favor of the project and other Democrats are not.

The main problem I see here is that the project isn’t being delayed because they want to make sure they do all the research they can to come to the safest decision for America, it’s being delayed so that the politicians can find the easiest way out of it.

Global warming and climate change are two very real problems in today’s day in age and the burning and consumption of crude oil contributes to those problems in a big way. The government could do so much better than they are right now. Instead of wasting all the time they already have putting off making a decision they should be looking for different solutions.

The supporters of the project give the fact that we would no longer have to count on Foreign oil any longer as a benefit of this pipeline, if you ask me we shouldn’t rely on crude oil at all. It is not a renewable resource once it is gone it is gone. They are also predicting how much good it could do to the economy by 2035. Who is to say if there will still be crude oil around in 20 years?

The burning of crude oil has a clear and devastating effect on the Earth. I understand all the potential this project has but its about time the Government started to put the health and well being of its citizens and the Earth as a whole ahead of the need for funding and votes.

This time and money should be invested into researching new clean energy alternatives. We cannot live off of crude oil forever; we will eventually need a new energy alternative so why should we wait till the last minute to find one. The government needs to be proactive and find one now.

There is only one Earth; we need to do everything we can to protect it while we still can.

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