Originally posted on Daily Kos by Bill McKibben
There are an awful lot of reasons to oppose Keystone XL, from the danger of spills to the hideous damage the mining does on native land in Alberta (the technical name for the vast tarsands complex, I think, is “Mordor”.)
Underlying them all, however, is the sheer quantity of carbon that the pipeline will pour into the atmosphere—and a new report just out today provides the vivid numbers. In a single year, the pipeline will add as much carbon dioxide to the atmosphere as all the cars in California, Washington, Oregon, Florida, Michigan, and New York combined. That is, you could park every single car in every one of those states—every Escalade in L.A., every minivan in Michigan—and the pipeline would make up for it. The president’s people keep boasting about his plan to increase automobile mileage—but this pipeline will carry near as much oil as that will save.
Over the next 35 years this one pipeline would carry as much carbon as the entire U.S. burned last year. And almost all of it will be going abroad, to help other countries turn themselves into import-dependent car cultures. And the only beneficiaries will be folks like the Koch Brothers, who have vast tarsands holdings, the giant oil companies, and the owners of the refineries, at least some of whom are Saudi oil barons. Continue reading