Poll: Majority recognize common sense, realize Keystone XL is a fake controversy

posted at 10:31 am on December 13, 2013 by Erika Johnsen

By my last count, we’re now somewhere in the “March 2014″-ish territory for the date by which the Obama administration will finally-maybe-possibly-probably-not deliver their final review of and ultimate verdict on the Keystone XL pipeline, the northern extension of the already-constructed Keystone pipeline that will ship oil sands from Canada (as well as oil-and-gas products from North Dakota!) to refineries on our southern coast. The project’s crossing of international boundaries means that it falls under the jurisdiction of the State Department, and the Obama administration has now been “reviewing” the project for nigh on five years while the self-titled environmentalist movement has been trying their darndest to transform the issue into the End-All, Be-All Climate-Change Flashpoint Of Our Time.

While wealthy progressive donors and eco-lobbyists galore have glommed on to effort, the general public at large hasn’t been quite as galvanized by their hysterical and misleading claims about the pipeline’s impact, as the latest poll on the subject confirms yet again. Via Bloomberg:

A Bloomberg National Poll shows support for the $5.4 billion link between Alberta’s oil sands and U.S. Gulf Coast refineries remains strong, with 56 percent of respondents viewing it as a chance to reduce dependence on oil imports from less reliable trading partners. That compares with the 35 percent who say they see it more as a potential source of damaging oil spills and harmful greenhouse gas emissions.

A push by environmental groups against the project may be affecting public opinion: 58 percent of poll respondents say they want Canada to take steps to reduce carbon dioxide emissions as a condition for approval, with 32 percent opposing such a requirement.

“It’s cautious optimism that this would be something that would improve U.S. energy security, outweighing the concerns,” says J. Ann Selzer, whose Des Moines, Iowa-based Selzer & Co. surveyed 1,004 U.S. adults from Dec. 6-9. “But obviously if you can stem the concerns, why wouldn’t you?”

That caveat of having Canada take some steps to otherwise guard against climate change is always going to be there — just about anybody, upon being asked whether a bureaucracy should take steps to try to mitigate any negative environmental impacts, will of course say yes — but the message here is that the Keystone XL pipeline is absolutely not the large-scale controversy environmentalists want it to be, and that the United States & Friends are undergoing an energy boom for which we need to allow the private sector to provide the adequate infrastructure, and soon. The pipeline method of transport is much greener and safer than the alternate methods now being employed in the pipeline’s absence, and considering that Canada’s oil sands are coming out of the ground with or without it, the Obama administration really needs to quit the stalling and start making moves to bolster our energy sector and subsequently our overall economy.

But let that not deter the determined environmentalist crowd; on Thursday, a group of Democrats sent a letter to President Obama discouraging him from moving forward on the pipeline until that manufactured “conflict of interest” crisis is resolved.

Rep. Raul Grijalva (D-Ariz.), the ranking member of the House Natural Resources Committee, took the lead on the letter expressing “serious concerns about conflicts of interest” related to the consulting firm that authored the most recent environmental impact analysis, which downplayed environmental and safety concerns. As The Huffington Post has previously reported, after contractor Environmental Resources Management wrote the report on Keystone XL, it was discovered that some of the consultants involved in the analysis had done previous work for the company seeking to build the pipeline, TransCanada. They had also done work for a TransCanada subsidiary and for other oil companies that could benefit from the pipeline’s construction. Documents released via a Freedom of Information Act Request showed that the company had not disclosed the previous work in its conflict of interest statement. …

The members of Congress wrote Thursday that it “would be unwise and premature” for the State Department to release a final environmental impact analysis from ERM while the investigation is ongoing. The letter also accuses the company of “lying to federal officials about its ties to TransCanada and over a dozen oil companies with a direct stake in whether or not Keystone XL gets approved.”

Rep. Grijalva. This guy. That is all.

And, by the way, I might add that the southern portion of the pipeline is already officially in action, via The Hill:

Oil is now being pumped into the controversial Keystone XL pipeline’s southern leg, which spans from Oklahoma to the Texas coast, The Houston Chronicle reports.

“TransCanada is pleased to confirm that at approximately 10:04 am Central Time on Saturday, December 7, 2013, the company began to inject oil into the Gulf Coast Project pipeline as it moves closer to the start of commercial service,” TransCanada spokesman Shawn Howard said in an email, according to the Chronicle.


Related Posts:

Breaking on Hot Air

Blowback

Note from Hot Air management: This section is for comments from Hot Air's community of registered readers. Please don't assume that Hot Air management agrees with or otherwise endorses any particular comment just because we let it stand. A reminder: Anyone who fails to comply with our terms of use may lose their posting privilege.

Trackbacks/Pings

Trackback URL

Comments

27 comments or bust!

Bishop on December 13, 2013 at 10:38 AM

Most people are not completely blinded by the environmental rhetoric, it is a clear no-brainer to build and use Keystone despite what the State Dep says. China is waiting with open arms remember.

major dad on December 13, 2013 at 10:42 AM

27 comments or bust!

Bishop on December 13, 2013 at 10:38 AM

It better not be bust, even if I have to do 26 comments myself.

Keystone XL will be held in limbo until one of the following happens:

- The company behind XL shelves it permanently, in which case it dies quietly.
- A Republican is elected President, in which case the State Department will kill it in the lame-duck period.

Steve Eggleston on December 13, 2013 at 10:44 AM

So build a 1 mile train line to ship oil from holding tanks in Canada to tanks in the US, where it can be pumped into the pipes. A solution only a government could love.

Fenris on December 13, 2013 at 10:49 AM

Berkshire Hathaway should be nationalized.

platypus on December 13, 2013 at 10:51 AM

I am so freakin mad at america for this, youve hurt us badly in this… (canada)
And we have been partners forever on everything,
It’s sad…

JMG

Gauthijm on December 13, 2013 at 10:51 AM

So build a 1 mile train line to ship oil from holding tanks in Canada to tanks in the US, where it can be pumped into the pipes. A solution only a government could love.

Fenris on December 13, 2013 at 10:49 AM

Or Berkshire Hathaway. Of course, I can’t tell the difference.

Steve Eggleston on December 13, 2013 at 10:53 AM

With the left, all you need is for one group or another to come up with some specific buzz-word demon and attach it to some dreamed-up nightmare scenario, and you have your alarmist talking points to last for a decade or more.

“Keystone XL” is simply this decade’s “Halliburton”, or the non-human equivalent of saying “Koch Brothers” to the left — it doesn’t matter that pipeline are far safer than shipping the oil south on rail lines, liberals who have probably never even looked at a map of U.S. oil and natural gas pipelines react with a Pavlovian response to this pipeline, in the same way 40 years ago they were prattling on about how the Alaskan pipeline was going to destroy the ecology for hundreds of miles around the area.

jon1979 on December 13, 2013 at 10:53 AM

I am so freakin mad at america for this, youve hurt us badly in this… (canada)
And we have been partners forever on everything,
It’s sad…

JMG

Gauthijm on December 13, 2013 at 10:51 AM

You do realize Obama’s First Rule of Foreign Policy – <expletive deleted> over every country that was not hostile to Bush. Unfortunately for Canada, it wasn’t hostile to Bush.

Steve Eggleston on December 13, 2013 at 10:53 AM

Maybe gang green has a point here, we could go back to days of yore and replace fossil fuels with a renewable energy source like whale oil.

antipc on December 13, 2013 at 10:54 AM

So if the State Dept. and the Administration stop this, do they have assurances from the Chinese who will buy the oil, that they won’t refine it and use it? And if they do actually use the oil they buy, assurances that everything will be done cleaner and more environmentally friendly than we can do it here?

oldroy on December 13, 2013 at 11:01 AM

As long as we are dreaming. Isn’t there already pipelines going from Canada to the US? Hook up with an existing company that has those lines. Mabe a ‘spare’ line could be layed down for an already approved, working pipeline.

TerryW on December 13, 2013 at 11:02 AM

Canada should institute a muslim sharia government, Dog Eater would set a land speed record approving the pipeline.

Bishop on December 13, 2013 at 11:03 AM

Youre right steve
thx for explaining it
God I detest Dog-Eater..
3 more years, I might not make it, sane I mean :)
JMG

Gauthijm on December 13, 2013 at 11:03 AM

God Bless Texas

workingclass artist on December 13, 2013 at 11:04 AM

oldroy on December 13, 2013 at 11:01 AM

I’m sure that the Chinese will be quite happy to give us any assurances we desire, and that will satisfy any politician’s doubts.

Fenris on December 13, 2013 at 11:04 AM

I’m sure that the Chinese will be quite happy to give us any assurances we desire, and that will satisfy any politician’s doubts.

Fenris on December 13, 2013 at 11:04 AM

Maybe we could buy the oil and just give it to the Chinese in exchange for the right to navigate international waters in the South China Sea? Of course, we would respect the new air defense zone.

oldroy on December 13, 2013 at 11:07 AM

Maybe we could buy the oil and just give it to the Chinese in exchange for the right to navigate international waters in the South China Sea? Of course, we would respect the new air defense zone.

oldroy on December 13, 2013 at 11:07 AM

Hold fire on that South China Sea for a bit. The news from Bill Gertz will be coming up in the rotation shortly.

Steve Eggleston on December 13, 2013 at 11:13 AM

oldroy on December 13, 2013 at 11:07 AM

That sounds like a plan Obama could live with, subject to renegotiation in the future if China sees the need to occupy Taiwan. Or Japan for that matter.

Fenris on December 13, 2013 at 11:14 AM

- A Republican is elected President, in which case the State Department will kill it in the lame-duck period.

Alas, there is no “lame-duck period” for the State Department, it’s always run by Progs.

Knott Buyinit on December 13, 2013 at 11:14 AM

Canada/America Held Hostage by EnvironmentalWackoInSurgencyActivistGoons!!

canopfor on December 13, 2013 at 11:15 AM

Alas, there is no “lame-duck period” for the State Department, it’s always run by Progs.

Knott Buyinit on December 13, 2013 at 11:14 AM

The careerists are all Progs, but they won’t take the chance the appointed SecState will approve it over their objections.

Steve Eggleston on December 13, 2013 at 11:16 AM

- A Republican is elected President, in which case the State Department will kill it in the lame-duck period.

Steve Eggleston on December 13, 2013 at 10:44 AM

In which case, the Republican president-elect will provide assurances that they will approve it and TransCanada will just wait until January.

blammm on December 13, 2013 at 11:20 AM

*filler comment to get past 27*

Bishop on December 13, 2013 at 11:21 AM

In which case, the Republican president-elect will provide assurances that they will approve it and TransCanada will just wait until January.

blammm on December 13, 2013 at 11:20 AM

It would be crushed in such a way that it can’t be brought back.

Steve Eggleston on December 13, 2013 at 11:24 AM

We are now at 26 comments.

celtic warrior on December 13, 2013 at 11:38 AM

Doing my part to get over the 27 hump.

God Bless Texas

workingclass artist on December 13, 2013 at 11:04 AM

He did

cozmo on December 13, 2013 at 11:40 AM

27!

And Bishop!

Bruno Strozek on December 13, 2013 at 11:43 AM

As long as we are dreaming. Isn’t there already pipelines going from Canada to the US? Hook up with an existing company that has those lines. Mabe a ‘spare’ line could be layed down for an already approved, working pipeline.

TerryW on December 13, 2013 at 11:02 AM

That’s the reason why we’re talking about Keystone XL – there is an existing Keystone pipeline between Canada and the US that is quite insufficient to carry the volume of oil being produced.

I wish it were as simple as laying a “spare” line, but the EPA decided otherwise.

Steve Eggleston on December 13, 2013 at 11:50 AM

The careerists are all Progs, but they won’t take the chance the appointed SecState will approve it over their objections.

Steve Eggleston on December 13, 2013 at 11:16 AM

The first mission of the appointees of the next Republican President is going to have to be to clean out the ‘professional bureaucrats’ within the Federal Government. Because if this isn’t done, those shadow warriors will be working to undermine every single initiative throughout their entire term in office.

Athos on December 13, 2013 at 11:52 AM

There are literally dozens of issues, like Keystone, that Obama opposes/supports against the will of the majority of the American people.

Yet, the GOP refuses to attack Obama on any of these.

bw222 on December 13, 2013 at 11:52 AM

A push by environmental groups against the project may be affecting public opinion: 58 percent of poll respondents say they want Canada to take steps to reduce carbon dioxide emissions as a condition for approval, with 32 percent opposing such a requirement.

If the Canadian oil is sent to China, refined into fuels and burned, it will emit just as much carbon dioxide into the atmosphere as if it were sent to the United States and refined and burned here.

The amount of energy needed to pump the oil from Alberta over the Rocky Mountains to Vancouver is probably greater than that needed to pump the oil over the Great Plains from Alberta to Nebraska. Add to that the fuel burned by oil tankers to ship Canadian oil across the Pacific to China, and the total carbon dioxide emissions are HIGHER if Canadian oil is shipped to China than if it is piped to Nebraska.

So let’s minimize carbon dioxide emissions and transfer Canadian oil over a shorter distance using the Keystone XL pipeline!

Steve Z on December 13, 2013 at 11:54 AM

Doing my part to get over the 27 hump.

God Bless Texas

workingclass artist on December 13, 2013 at 11:04 AM

He did

cozmo on December 13, 2013 at 11:40 AM

Well that oldie cheered up my mornin’

Thanks for posting the link

workingclass artist on December 13, 2013 at 11:58 AM

The first mission of the appointees of the next Republican President is going to have to be to clean out the ‘professional bureaucrats’ within the Federal Government. Because if this isn’t done, those shadow warriors will be working to undermine every single initiative throughout their entire term in office.

Athos on December 13, 2013 at 11:52 AM

Don’t expect too much. Remember how the federal government grew under George W. Bush and the GOP-controlled Congress from 2001-2006. Many of the big GOP donor groups (e.g. U.S. Chamber of Commerce)don’t want to see the size of the government reduced.

bw222 on December 13, 2013 at 11:58 AM

The environmentalist crowd is causing delays, but I wonder about Warren Buffett his companies owns the rail lines in the oil area and are making ton’s of money transporting the oil. As long as there is no pipeline there is plenty of profit for Warren Buffets rail lines and once the pipeline is in what will he be hauling.

Release on December 13, 2013 at 11:59 AM

If the Canadian oil is sent to China, refined into fuels and burned, it will emit just as much carbon dioxide into the atmosphere as if it were sent to the United States and refined and burned here.

Steve Z on December 13, 2013 at 11:54 AM

In addition, think of the energy expended in shipping crude purchased from our “friends” in the Middle East.

bw222 on December 13, 2013 at 12:02 PM

Rep. Grijalva. This guy. That is all.

Guy should be named Drivel-lava. Don’t usually make fun of names, but that’s all the guy does.

Marcola on December 13, 2013 at 12:10 PM

The pipeline method of transport is much greener and safer than the alternate methods now being employed in the pipeline’s absence, and considering that Canada’s oil sands are coming out of the ground with or without it, the Obama administration really needs to quit the stalling and start making moves to bolster our energy sector and subsequently our overall economy.

But it does not put money in Warren Buffett’s pocket. The only bit of loyalty Ogabe possesses is to his biggest contributors. (It’s a weird kind of loyalty meaning he tends to stab them in the back less often than we lesser peopns.)

catsandbooks on December 13, 2013 at 12:16 PM

That’s the reason why we’re talking about Keystone XL – there is an existing Keystone pipeline between Canada and the US that is quite insufficient to carry the volume of oil being produced.

I wish it were as simple as laying a “spare” line, but the EPA decided otherwise.

Steve Eggleston on December 13, 2013 at 11:50 AM

The existing Keystone pipeline runs eastward from southern Alberta through Saskatchewan and Manitoba just north of the U.S. border, then turns southward along the eastern borders of ND, SD, and Nebraska to a point in southeastern Nebraska.

The proposed Keystone XL pipeline would take a shortcut southeastward along a nearly-straight line from Alberta through eastern Montana, western SD, and eastern Nebraska to the same point in southeastern Nebraska.

People have known for about 2,300 years since Pythagoras that the hypotenuse of a right triangle is shorter than the sum of its legs, and the proposed Keystone XL pipeline would be over 300 miles shorter than the existing Keystone pipeline. A shorter distance means lower pumping costs and fewer flanges which might leak oil into somebody’s precious cornfield.

This project should be a no-brainer for anyone with an ounce of common sense, but our “Judgment to Lead” President has no brains, and no judgment to lead.

Steve Z on December 13, 2013 at 12:40 PM

“Keystone XL” is simply this decade’s “Halliburton”, or the non-human equivalent of saying “Koch Brothers” to the left — it doesn’t matter that pipeline are far safer than shipping the oil south on rail lines, liberals who have probably never even looked at a map of U.S. oil and natural gas pipelines react with a Pavlovian response to this pipeline, in the same way 40 years ago they were prattling on about how the Alaskan pipeline was going to destroy the ecology for hundreds of miles around the area.

jon1979 on December 13, 2013 at 10:53 AM

The caribou in Alaska tend to congregate near the pipeline during their spring and fall migration. The heat from the pipeline tends to melt the snow nearby, giving the caribou more grass to eat.

Who knows, maybe the bison will congregate around the Keystone XL pipeline in winter…

Steve Z on December 13, 2013 at 12:47 PM

It’s snowed in Cairo for the first time in 112 years

J_Crater on December 13, 2013 at 12:57 PM

58 percent of poll respondents say they want Canada to take steps to reduce carbon dioxide emissions as a condition for approval . . .

This is sooo disappointing, 58% have bought the lie and continue to buy the lie about CO2 as “pollution”, therefore bad. CO2 is a pollutant only because Democrats have cried global warming, loudly and with violent gesticulations, record breaking weather news through 80′s and 90′s claimed as proof. But then high temperature records inconveniently stopped being broken. Has anybody (Continental US or Cairo, Egypt) stepped outside this week, or maybe saw last month’s heating bill?

Based on current weather conditions/trends and Democrat logic, we need more atmospheric CO2. C’mon 58% — wake up!

exdeadhead on December 13, 2013 at 2:16 PM

With the left, all you need is for one group or another to come up with some specific buzz-word demon and attach it to some dreamed-up nightmare scenario, and you have your alarmist talking points to last for a decade or more.

“Keystone XL” is simply this decade’s “Halliburton”, or the non-human equivalent of saying “Koch Brothers” to the left — it doesn’t matter that pipeline are far safer than shipping the oil south on rail lines, liberals who have probably never even looked at a map of U.S. oil and natural gas pipelines react with a Pavlovian response to this pipeline, in the same way 40 years ago they were prattling on about how the Alaskan pipeline was going to destroy the ecology for hundreds of miles around the area.

jon1979 on December 13, 2013 at 10:53 AM

Yep, this is the “reality-based community” at its finest.

rockmom on December 13, 2013 at 2:42 PM

So build a 1 mile train line to ship oil from holding tanks in Canada to tanks in the US, where it can be pumped into the pipes. A solution only a government could love.

Fenris on December 13, 2013 at 10:49 AM

Yep, and name it the Barack H. Obama railroad.

slickwillie2001 on December 13, 2013 at 4:41 PM

The pipeline would also save my state of ND from getting her roads hammered to hell and back.
But no one cares about us poor schmucks here in the ‘Dakotas’.

Badger40 on December 13, 2013 at 5:14 PM

Dear Oil Pipeline People.

Next time don’t mention the cross border connection until the rest of the pipeline is built and then act like you accidentally built too much capacity.

Sincerely, Rational Thought.

Slowburn on December 14, 2013 at 3:34 AM