For Immediate Release

Organization Profile: 

Molly Haigh, 907-750-1999,

Keystone XL Pipeline Could Cost $100 Billion Per Year in Health and Environmental Damages

EPA Asks State Department for Total Cost to Society of KXL, Oil Change International Spells it Out

WASHINGTON - Oil Change International today uncovered that the full cost of the Keystone XL Pipeline to society could be upwards of $100 Billion per year in damages to health, property, ecosystems, and the climate. The new study was released after the EPA requested the State Department provide a more detailed review of the actual cost of the pipeline to society as a part of their SEIS.

See the study from Oil Change International:

More than one million people submitted comments opposing the pipeline during the public comment period for the pipeline in addition to the EPA.

“Americans are fed up with footing the bill for corporate pollution. The Keystone XL Pipeline will cause billions of dollars in damages every year that no one wants to pay,” said Oil Change International’s Research Director Lorne Stockman. “TransCanada is proposing a massive wealth transfer from our own pockets to Big Oil-- we will pay in hospital visits, rebuilding after super storms, and in clean up efforts in communities like Mayflower and Kalamazoo. That’s outrageous, and President Obama should reject this pipeline immediately as a lose-lose gamble.”

The study backs up the mounting concerns of many Americans after a series of costly spills and destructive storms, including the tar sands spills in Mayflower, AR and Kalamazoo, MI as well storms from Sandy to Irene to Katrina where taxpayers were left to foot many if not all of the costs.

The 100 billion dollar figure was calculated using estimates of the pipeline’s total carbon footprint, 181 million metric tons per CO2e per year, and a social cost of carbon of $532 per ton. The exact social cost of carbon pollution is hard to pinpoint, but the study lays out the full range of possiblilities which you can see here:

The study concludes: “If the President Obama’s State Department counted the social cost of carbon from Keystone XL it would surely find it in the national interest to deny the pipeline’s permit.”


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Oil Change International is a research, communication, and advocacy organization focused on exposing the true costs of fossil fuels and facilitating the coming transition towards clean energy.

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