The Texas Environmental Democrats have signed on to a resolution in opposition to the Keystone XL pipeline that if approved by the State Department will deliver dirty tar sands oil from Canada to refineries in Texas. The extraction process alone is reason enough to oppose this project. Hundreds of acres of pristine forest will be strip mined to access the tar sands beneath and leading climatologists warn that if the carbon stored there is released in to the atmosphere, it will essentially be “game over” in terms of reversing the effects of global warming.
The proposed pipeline will carry super-heated bitumen from Canada across the United States. The excessive heat and corrosiveness of this toxic sludge make the likelihood of ruptures increase exponentially. The Houston area, where most of the refining will take place, will be washed in pollution equivalent to five coal plants.
President Obama’s State Department has the final say as to whether this project can proceed. As loyal Democrats, we need to send a strong message that approving this permit will be a bridge too far for many of the activists that will be needed to win re-election in 2012. This is a political issue as much as it is an environmental one.