Annual emissions from Keystone pipeline would be one-tenth of what's produced by ... cow farts

I was torn between posting this animal-themed instant classic from WaPo and the news today about scientists reverse-engineering aging in mice by using young blood. But then I remembered an ironclad rule of blogging: When in doubt, go with the news story that involves farting. Besides, we cover stuff about elderly vampirism of the young all the time. Given the “creative” uses to which infant tissue is already put, it’s too depressing to spitball where a “young blood” industry might lead.

So let’s stick with cow farts. I’m not even going to quote from WaPo’s story. Just eyeball this graph they made to grasp how high the stakes are environmentally in killing off a few thousand jobs to protect the tar sands.


Keystone’s share of the pie is roughly 10 percent of what America’s cows toot into the atmosphere per annum. Maybe Senate Democrats will see the chart, think about that for four seconds, and reconsider their opposition to the pipeline, yes?

Nope. Breaking late today from CNN is news that they’re all set to kill John Hoeven’s bill approving the pipeline. And in classic weaselly fashion, they’re going to make sure they fall just short: They’ve got 11 vulnerable Democrats set to vote yes, including Landrieu and Pryor, but just enough of the rest have peeled off to guarantee the bill’s failure. It’s theater, bought and paid for by environmental lobbyists who feel it’s crucial to send a message about emissions by blocking an energy project that’ll barely increase America’s carbon footprint:

Senators like Mary Landrieu of Louisiana, Mark Begich of Alaska, John Walsh of Montana, and Mark Pryor of Arkansas, could tell voters they fought hard for one of the energy industry’s top priorities and the accompanying jobs that would go with it.

The Keystone proposal, written by Sen. John Hoeven, R-North Dakota and Landrieu, has 56 co-sponsors – 45 Republicans and 11 Democrats. That is still four short of the 60 votes it would need to pass…

Those votes would likely have to come from six other Democrats who just over a year ago backed a non-binding measure that expressed support for the project.

Of that group, Senators Bill Nelson of Florida, Chris Coons of Delaware, and Tim Johnson of South Dakota, citing different reasons, now say they will vote against the current legislation, making it unlikely it would reach the 60-vote threshold.

Exit question: When do we ban cows?

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