It’s ba-aack — the Keystone XL pipeline, that is. The Senate is set to vote tomorrow on an amendment created by Big Oil wearing a Sen. Pat Roberts (R-Kan.) mask. The amendment would revive everyone’s favorite pipeline — and, while it was at it, greenlight all the other oil-hungry environmental ruination that Republicans go in for.
The Senate defeated Keystone yet again last week, but Sen. Roberts included the pipeline in amendment #1826 of the Senate transportation bill (S. 1813). And that’s not the only Big Oil party favor he stuck in this grab bag of evil:
It would mandate drilling off of every coast in our nation and in the Arctic Refuge, allow oil shale development on millions of acres in America’s west, and allow the already-rejected Keystone XL pipeline to go forward.
In fact, Roberts’ amendment would double America’s oil drilling, a feat achieved by opening up new areas off the Atlantic and California coasts and in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, 1.5 million acres of pristine land that nearly 200 species of wildlife call home. Millions of acres in the West would throw their doors open to oil shale development, an environmentally damaging and extremely energy-intensive process. Oh, and that dang Keystone XL pipeline would get the go-ahead without even requiring an environmental review.
And here’s the real kicker: Roberts claims this amendment belongs in the transportation bill because the new development is needed to pay for the transpo budget. But leasing the majority of America’s green and blue spaces to oil and gas developers still wouldn’t cover the tab for new transportation infrastructure. Plus, how ironic is it to pay for trains and buses and bike lanes by decimating the country’s wild spaces to feed our cars?
UPDATE: Crisis averted!
Sen. Roberts' Amendment Is Just a Wish List for Big Oil, NRDC Switchboard.