Radical environmental groups plan Keystone XL counter-protest

Nothing pisses off the far-left greenies more than the reality that America is discovering and will use untold quantities of new, inexpensive, reliable energy from fossil fuels over the coming decades.

While humanity is clearly winning in the form of inexpensive, abundant energy, the latest battle on this front has been the Keystone XL pipeline. Rio Grande Foundation is co-sponsoring a rally in support of the pipeline.

Our reasons are simple: thousands of jobs will be created by the pipeline and the federal government should not stand in the way if a pipeline is desired. However, the evidence is that this fuel source will be used no matter what. Product will be shipped by train or will be shipped within Canada to the West Coast for transport to Asia. According to this article which links to and summarizes a report on the Pipeline from the US State Department, “Approval or denial of the proposed project is unlikely to have a substantial impact on the rate of development in the oil sands, or on the amount of heavy crude oil refined in the Gulf Coast area.”

That hasn’t stopped radical environmentalists from making stopping the pipeline a major issue. They have even organized a counter-protest against our rally (so be prepared!). Rational arguments are unlikely to persuade those who make decisions based on emotion and ignore data and research from Obama’s State Department. The treatment of birds killed in the production of environmentally-favored vs. hated energy is one obvious case of hypocrisy.

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11 Replies to “Radical environmental groups plan Keystone XL counter-protest”

  1. Looking forward to our dual rallies on Wednesday. We hope to educate you and your participants with some real facts based on science- what a concept!

    But it is interesting that you label as radical, what 97% of climate scientists, the Pentagon, NASA, and 18 of the most respected US scientific organizations state:
    “Observations throughout the world make it clear that climate change is occurring, and rigorous scientific research demonstrates that the greenhouse gases emitted by human activities are the primary driver.” (link1).

    And these human activities of course are the burning of fossil fuels by the companies that ultimately fund the Rio Grande Foundation, via several layers of think tanks and donor groups – as detailed in the July 28, 2012 Abq Journal piece by Thomas Cole (link 2).

    Perhaps the real radicals are the Oil, Coal and Gas companies whose business plan is to burn 5 TIMES as much carbon as is tolerable and still have a livable climate? What happens to their stock prices when investors realize that is their future? (link 3).

    Best regards,
    Tom Solomon
    350.org NM

    Links:
    1 http://climate.nasa.gov/scientific-consensus
    2 http://www.abqjournal.com/120882/upfront/foundation-pushes-conservative-libertarian-causes.html
    3 http://www.carbontracker.org/investors-challenge-fossil-fuel-companies

    1. Actually Tom, that 97% consensus number is a bit deceiving. But our efforts don’t really have anything to do with global-warming per se. That’s because, regardless of the construction of the pipeline, this fuel source will be used (as I wrote in my original article).

      So, we support the right of private industry to construct Keystone XL on the principle that government should not stand in the way of private enterprise unless there is some clear and obvious fraud being done and that is simply not the case. You, on the other hand, are attempting to use the force of government to impose your views on the rest of us whether we like it or not.

  2. Actually Paul,

    The 97% Consensus is a Robust Result

    Nevertheless, the existence of the expert consensus on human-caused global warming is a reality, as is clear from an examination of the full body of evidence. For example, Naomi Oreskes found no rejections of the consensus in a survey of 928 abstracts performed in 2004. Doran & Zimmerman (2009) found a 97% consensus among scientists actively publishing climate research. Anderegg et al. (2010) reviewed publicly signed declarations supporting or rejecting human-caused global warming, and again found over 97% consensus among climate experts. Cook et al. (2013) found the same 97% result through a survey of over 12,000 climate abstracts from peer-reviewed journals, as well as from over 2,000 scientist author self-ratings, among abstracts and papers taking a position on the causes of global warming.

    In addition to these studies, we have the National Academies of Science from 33 different countries all endorsing the consensus. Dozens of scientific organizations have endorsed the consensus on human-caused global warming. Only one has ever rejected the consensus – the American Association of Petroleum Geologists – and even they shifted to a neutral position when members threatened to not renew their memberships due to its position of climate denial.

    In short, the 97% consensus on human-caused global warming is a robust result, found using several different methods in various studies over the past decade. It really shouldn’t be a surprise at this point, and denying it is, well, denial.

  3. Getting Tar Sands Oil to market in the vastly increased quantities planned by Canadian producers is FAR from inevitable. The EPA has challenged the State Dept contractor (ERM) who wrote that conclusion in TransCanada’s draft environmental impact statement… because they lied on their conflict of interest disclosure statement by failing to admit that key authors of the ERM report had long ties to the oil industry. That is a key reason why the final KXL recommendation by State has been delayed for so long. See this link:
    http://ens-newswire.com/2013/07/11/keystone-xl-environmental-consultant-lied-about-transcanada-ties/

    All 7 proposed pipeline expansions are tangled in knots due to the objections of citizens who don’t want to live with the consequences of transporting and burning this dirty substance. So says this recent article:
    http://e360.yale.edu/feature/shipping_crude_oil_by_rail_new_front_in_tar_sands_wars/2717/

    “The Canadian and Alberta governments avidly support all these proposals, yet opponents have entangled every one in so much protest and legal conflict that their fates are uncertain. Based on the assumption that at least some of the pipelines will be approved, tar sands developers are investing at a current rate of $19 billion a year in tar sands projects. Now they face the real possibility that delays in pipeline construction (never mind outright rejections) will leave them without transport outlets within a year or two. That’s one reason that last month Alberta bitumen sold for as low as $29.40 a barrel, while benchmark West Texas light crude sold for $94.25.”

    And rail transport of tar sands oil is much more expensive than transport of crude oil…

    “U.S. Light crude is hydrogen-heavy and carbon-light; its high hydrogen content enables it to flow easily but also makes it alarmingly explosive. Bitumen, the chief constituent of heavy crude, is the opposite, carbon-heavy and hydrogen-light, as viscous as peanut butter, unable to flow through pipelines unless diluents are added to it, but also unable to be loaded into railcars unless it is heated or diluted. Heavy crude is therefore more expensive to transport by rail than light crude, which is one reason tar sands crude lags far behind light crude in rail shipments. Another is that few rail cars are equipped to carry heavy crude.”

    1. Yes, of course, an Administration that is hostile to oil and gas production hires a company via the State Department to “stovepipe” a report that comes in with a pro-energy/pro-pipeline conclusion contrary to the Administration’s own interest which is to kill the pipeline. That makes plenty of sense. This source of energy will be used eventually because “renewables” just don’t cut it as an energy source and won’t for many years. You may succeed in tying the pipeline up in knots or killing it as long as Obama’s in office, but this is just going to shift the use of this energy source either to a different nation or slightly into the future.

        1. That’s what will happen. I don’t have a problem with trains when they make sense from a free market perspective. I do think that if the pipeline is economically-viable, it should be allowed to move forward, but absent the pipeline, trains will be the next option. I also believe pipelines are slightly safer than rail, but both are good options.

          1. Paul, you know damn well that “free markets” are a myth!

            You know damn well that the road in front of your house is not expected to make money! :$

  4. Wow Paul, I want some of what you are smoking.

    For an administration that is hostile to oil and gas production, President Obama has led an enormous boom in US oil and gas output:

    “U.S. surges past Saudis to become world’s top oil supplier -PIRA”

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/10/15/us-oil-pira-idUSL1N0I51IX20131015

    Oct 15 (Reuters) – The United States has overtaken Saudi Arabia to become the world’s biggest oil producer as the jump in output from shale plays has led to the second biggest oil boom in history, according to leading U.S. energy consultancy PIRA.

    U.S. output, which includes natural gas liquids and biofuels, has swelled 3.2 million barrels per day (bpd) since 2009, the fastest expansion in production over a four-year period since a surge in Saudi Arabia’s output from 1970-1974, PIRA said in a release on Tuesday.

    It was the latest milestone for the U.S. oil sector caused by the shale revolution, which has upended global oil trade. While still the largest consumer of fuel, the rise of cheap crude available to domestic refiners has turned the United States into a significant exporter of gasoline and distillate fuels.

    Last month, China surpassed the United States as the largest importer of crude, according to the U.S. government, as the rise of domestic output cuts the U.S. dependence on overseas oil.

    “(The U.S.) growth rate is greater than the sum of the growth of the next nine fastest growing countries combined and has covered most of the world’s net demand growth over the past two years,” PIRA Energy Group wrote.

    “The U.S. position as the largest oil supplier in the world looks to be secure for many years,” it added.

  5. What’s impressive is that virtually all the growth in U.S. energy production has taken place on private and state land — in spite of President Obama’s policies. Imagine how much more oil and gas would be produced if the federal government emulated the policies of North Dakota and Texas and opened federal land to increased drilling.

    Actually, blocking the Keystone pipeline will help the environment in a roundabout way. The Canadians will build a pipeline to their West Coast. From there, tankers will carry the oil across the Pacific to China (which already is investing in Canadian oil interests). But there will be an environmental benefit if the Chinese use the oil to power their solar-panel factories.

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