The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release

Peter Galvin,, (707) 986-2600

Miles Grant,, (703) 864-9599

Senate Hearing a Reminder That Keystone XL Is Not In the National Interest


This morning, the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee held a hearing to discuss the impact of the proposed Keystone XL tar sands pipeline on the American national interest.
Today's hearing highlights the pipeline's significant climate implications. As Dr. James Hansen, who testified before the Foreign Relations Committee today, has said, expanding development of carbon-heavy Canadian tar sands would mean "game over for the climate". Independent climate scientists and industry officials agree that the Keystone is the linchpin for massive tar sands development.

Hansen was joined by Sierra Club Executive Director Michael Brune, who highlighted the threat the pipeline poses to communities along its route, American consumers, and our national security, as well as the potential for dire climate implications should the pipeline be approved: "Our country has a clear, science-based goal to limit climate pollution. We must keep this in mind and recognize that achieving that goal, is incompatible with permitting this pipeline. None of the scenarios in the State Department's analysis show how Keystone XL could be built in a way that insures our nation can meet those climate goals. In fact, Keystone XL would significantly exacerbate climate pollution because it would increase the development of tar sands substantially."

Also testifying at today's hearing is former White House National Security Adviser Jim Jones, whose support for the export pipeline is not surprising, given that since leaving his government post he's taken a job lobbying for the American Petroleum Institute.

Notably, many other high-profile military voices, who aren't on the oil industry's payroll, have spoken out against the pipeline and made clear that it is not in the best interest of the American public or Armed Services.

Today's hearing only serves to reinforce what we've known for years, regardless of industry spin: the Keystone pipeline fails the President's climate test, threatens American land and water, and does nothing to support our economy or national security. In short, it is clearly not in our national interest.

At the Center for Biological Diversity, we believe that the welfare of human beings is deeply linked to nature — to the existence in our world of a vast diversity of wild animals and plants. Because diversity has intrinsic value, and because its loss impoverishes society, we work to secure a future for all species, great and small, hovering on the brink of extinction. We do so through science, law and creative media, with a focus on protecting the lands, waters and climate that species need to survive.

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