In a stunning announcement, the Obama Administration has rejected the proposed Keystone XL Pipeline route and doomed Americans to paying higher gasoline prices.
After dithering for three years over the proposed pipeline which would connect Canada’s oil-rich tar sands region in Alberta to Gulf Coast refineries, the State Department announced on Wednesday that it lacked sufficient time to properly consider the environmental impact posed by the project on environmentally sensitive areas along its route. The decision to reject the Keystone XL Pipeline will force Canadian authorities to move ahead with their backup plan for an alternate pipeline to the Pacific coast and sale of its oil to China. The Chinese are poised to exploit a golden energy opportunity while Americans are relegated to paying the higher fuel prices Obama promised during his election campaign back in 2008.
Added to the higher energy prices are the thousands of lost jobs the Keystone project would have meant to American workers. In a report released Tuesday highlighting the need to improve competitiveness, Obama’s vaunted jobs council said the government needs to “expeditiously, though cautiously, move forward on projects that can support hundreds of thousands of jobs” when it comes to energy projects in general. The project had received the backing of unions while being opposed by environmental groups.
In the midst of the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression, it is sheer nonsense to block a project that would provide thousands of much-needed American jobs with minimal impact on the environment and help secure a stable source of energy close to home. The Republican candidates have it right when they say the EPA is holding America hostage. The State Department’s lame excuse that 60 days isn’t enough time to perform the required environmental impact study doesn’t hold up when it is realized that they have been studying the problem for three years. The 60-day decision window deadline was established as an attachment to the payroll tax cut extension passed in December. John Boehner pointed out that this legislation doesn’t permit the State Department to reject the plan, but forces the decision to come from President Obama himself.
The Chinese are desperate to secure a stable source of energy to fuel its rampant economic growth, and this decision plays right into their hands. Canada’s tar sands hold billions of barrels of oil that will now aid China in its bid to exert economic and military hegemony over Asia and the Western Pacific, while the Obama Administration blows an opportunity to reduce America’s dependence on oil controlled by the Middle East.
With this decision, there can no longer be any doubt that President Obama is intent on destroying America’s capitalist system and recasting the country under socialism. There can be no other explanation for killing a project that promised hundreds of thousands of jobs while America is suffering an economic depression, that reduced America’s dependence on oil supplied by such an unstable region as the Middle East, and that supplied affordable energy to Americans faced with economic uncertainty. Candidate Obama promised Americans higher energy prices to break the monopoly of fossil fuels, and he has delivered on this promise as president.