The Obama administration gave TransCanada the OK to build the southern portion of its Keystone XL tar sands pipeline on Tuesday.
The company still needs two other permits to build the other portions of the Keystone XL, which will bring tar sands crude from Albert to Texas' Gulf coast.
Environmental activists have slammed the decision and vowed to continue fighting the pipeline.
“President Obama abandoned Texans and Oklahomans to the whims of Big Oil and an Army Corps that appears only too willing to serve them,” said Kim Huynh, dirty fuels campaigner at Friends of the Earth. “The Army Corps has shown a willful disregard for the concerns of residents whose health, land and livelihoods are at stake if Keystone XL is rubber-stamped, which is why we’re calling on [EPA] Administrator Lisa Jackson to step in and call for a full environmental review.”
Activists are stepping up pressure on Jackson to stop the permit for the pipeline. On Tuesday activists brought 117,000 signatures to the EPA asking Jackson to intervene. Elijah Zarlin, Campaign Manager for CREDO Action, stated, "The EPA must take action to prevent the Army Corps of Engineers from selling us out to TransCanada and ensuring certain disaster for the environment and our public health.”
Also, this summer activists under the Tar Sands Blockade banner are vowing sustained civil disobedience in Texas to fight the tar sands and the Keystone XL.