Sen. Baucus Calls for Hasty Approval of Dangerous Tar Sands Oil Pipeline

For Immediate Release

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Kristina Johnson (415) 977-5619

Sen. Baucus Calls for Hasty Approval of Dangerous Tar Sands Oil Pipeline

Proposed Tar Sands Pipeline Threatens Water, Air, Farmland, Health

WASHINGTON - This week, Montana Senator Max Baucus asked the U.S. State Department
to speed a decision on whether or not to approve a massive new pipeline
designed to carry the world's dirtiest oil from Canada into the United
States.

The Keystone XL pipeline would crisscross Montana, South Dakota,
Nebraska, Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas, putting drinking water at risk for
thousands of Americans and threatening one of the most important
sources of agricultural water in the United States. The U.S. State
Department is currently considering whether or not to grant a permit for
the pipeline, and has received tens of thousands of comments from
Americans urging that it not be built.

Senator Baucus' letter to the State Department falls in the midst of a
series of oil pipeline disasters that underscore the risks the Keystone
XL project would bring.

Statement of Sierra Club Dirty Fuels Campaign Coordinator Kate Colarulli:

It's disappointing to see Senator Baucus stand on the side of
Canadian oil companies rather than protect the health and well-being of
Americans.

In recent months we've seen just how dangerous oil pipelines can be.
Disasters in Michigan and Illinois have polluted our rivers and soil
with more than one million gallons of oil and have put American families
at risk.

Now a Canadian oil company wants to build a massive pipeline that
would carry the world's dirtiest oil into America, jeopardizing the
health of millions of residents.

The Keystone XL pipeline would bring toxic tar sands oil into
America's heartland, putting drinking water and farming at risk. Worse,
dirty oil from the pipeline would end up in refineries in American
cities, ratcheting up cancer-causing air pollution.

If ever there was a time to proceed with caution, it is now. We
shouldn't put American communities at risk from toxic pipelines just
because the oil industry is eager to turn a profit.

Tens of thousands of Americans have called on the State Department not to approve this dangerous pipeline.

The very least our leaders can do is answer basic questions about the
safety of this project before exposing Americans to the risk.

The State Department needs to take a good hard look at the facts
about pipeline safety and tar sands oil. This summer's oil disasters
have taught us just how high the cost of oil can be.

Instead of putting our communities in harm's way from a toxic
pipeline, we should be investing in the kind of clean energy that will
end our dependence on oil, create good, safe jobs, and infuse new life
into our economy.

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The Sierra Club is the oldest and largest grassroots environmental organization in the United States. It was founded on May 28, 1892 in San Francisco, California by the well-known conservationist and preservationist John Muir, who became its first president. The Sierra Club has hundreds of thousands of members in chapters located throughout the US, and is affiliated with Sierra Club Canada.

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