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The QueQue

The QueQue: Northside ISD sued in child’s shooting, Defunding firefighters, Chimp alert!

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The environmental concerns are clear — the company’s smaller Keystone line has already seen 12 spills, including the nasty case of the 800,000-gallon spill in the Kalamazoo River. The EPA has labeled past State Department analyses “inadequate” and “insufficient,” saying they failed to address spill risks, look at possible alternate routes, or assess potential damage from the pipeline to wetlands and migratory birds. But now opposition groups are challenging the very idea that the pipeline would even benefit us. The project has been touted by the oil industry as a way to boost U.S. energy security, but a new study released this month by Oil Change International claims the pipeline would do little to help in that regard. Rather, it would benefit owner TransCanada and others hoping to profit by courting the export market.

With an oversupply of oil hitting the U.S. market, producers these days are looking to rising-demand markets like Europe and China to make a buck. “An honest assessment of the Keystone XL project will show that the oil will be exported and will not benefit U.S. consumers,” the report claims, citing TransCanada’s already-existing contracts with companies like Valero, Motiva, Canadian Natural Resources and others openly planning to export. “The construction of Keystone XL will not lessen dependence on foreign oil — rather, it will feed the growing trend of exporting refined products out of the United States, thereby doing nothing to stabilize oil prices or gasoline prices at the pump.”

Still, in an interview with InsideClimate News, TransCanada spokesman Shawn Howard charged that “professional activists” lining the ranks of the opposition were simply trying to muddy the debate. As the project hits this critical juncture, he said, “These groups will drag in everything and the kitchen sink. It’s just an absolute bunch of rubbish.” •

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