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Top Conservation Groups Urge Hillary Clinton to Speak Out Against Keystone XL

WASHINGTON - Conservation groups representing millions of Americans today sent a letter to former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton urging her to speak out against the Keystone XL pipeline. The controversial project, the polluting equivalent of building 46 new coal-fired power plants, would deepen the climate crisis just as the United Nation’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and the Obama administration’s National Climate Assessment say it’s crucial that greenhouse gas emissions be drastically reduced to avoid catastrophe.

“If we’re going to have a livable planet for future generations — one that’s not fraught with floods, droughts, deadly heat waves and other catastrophic effects — it’s vital that we reject the polluting fossil fuels of the past and move to cleaner, safer energy sources,” reads today’s letter to Clinton. “Secretary Clinton, will you stand with us against Keystone XL?”

Today’s letter was signed by leaders of 30 conservation groups from around the country, including the Center for Biological Diversity,, CREDO Mobile and Friends of the Earth.

Secretary Clinton has long been an environmental advocate but has yet to take a public position on Keystone XL. The controversial pipeline would transport tar sands oil from Canada to Texas, where it would be refined and much of it shipped overseas. If the pipeline is built, climate scientist Dr. James Hansen has said it will be “game over” for avoiding the worst effects of climate change.

“There’s no doubt that Keystone XL is a turning point for President Obama and whoever takes his place in 2016,” said Bill Snape, senior counsel with the Center for Biological Diversity. “Approve this pipeline and you double-down on the disastrous fossil fuels that are driving the climate toward collapse. Reject Keystone and you open the door to a world of new possibilities with energy sources that are safer, saner, and ensure a livable planet. Secretary Clinton’s voice is badly needed to help steer this decision in the right direction.”

“Rejecting this pipeline has become a test of President Obama's resolve when it comes to fighting climate change,” said May Boeve, executive director of “Coming out strong against Keystone XL gives Hillary a chance to show the climate movement that she stands with us, and not the fossil fuel industry.”

“As global warming accelerates, the United States needs leaders who will stop making the situation worse right now,” said Michael Kieschnick, CEO of CREDO Mobile. “If Hillary Clinton cannot see that the Keystone XL pipeline should be stopped, environmental voters will know that she cannot be counted on in the fight against global warming.”

“Keystone XL is a bright line test for commitment to climate change,” said Erich Pica, president of Friends of the Earth. “Hillary Clinton needs to show her dedication to fighting climate change by denouncing this dirty and dangerous pipeline.”

Here is the full text of the letter sent to Secretary Clinton today and the groups that signed it:

Stand With Us Hillary

May 21, 2014

Madame Secretary,

Millions of Americans from coast to coast are deeply concerned about the climate crisis and the prospect of the Keystone XL pipeline being built.

If this pipeline is approved, it will be the equivalent of building 46 new coal-fired power plants. If we’re going to have a livable planet for future generations — one that’s not fraught with floods, droughts, deadly heat waves and other catastrophic effects — it’s vital that we reject the polluting fossil fuels of the past and move to cleaner, safer energy sources.

Secretary Clinton, will you stand with us against Keystone XL?

Given your longstanding advocacy for the environment and the importance of battling the climate crisis, your involvement would lend an important voice to the struggle against this dangerous pipeline and in favor of energy sources that don’t threaten future generations of Americans.

We’re at a critical moment. Please join us.

Sincerely,, May Boeve

Center for Biological Diversity, Kieran Suckling

Center for Food Safety, George Kimbrell

Center for International Environmental Law, Wm. Carroll Muffett

Chesapeake Climate Action Network, Mike Tidwell

Climate Action Liaison Committee, Quinton Zonderuan

CREDO, Michael Kieschnick

Desert Protective Council, Terry Weiner

Earthworks, Jennifer Krill

Endangered Species Coalition, Leda Huta

Energy Action Coalition, Kendall Mackey

Environmental Protection Information Center, Gary Graham Hughes

Food and Water Watch, Wenonah Hauter

Friends of the Earth, Erich Pica

Friends of the Owls, Peter Galvin

Friends of Whitehaven Park, William Snape

Greenpeace, Phil Radford

Kids vs. Global Warming/i Matter, Victoria Loorz

Klamath Forest Alliance, Kimberly Baker

Moms Clean Air Force, Dominique Browning

New Energy Economy, Mariel Nanasi

North County Watch, Susan Harvey

Oil Change International, Steve Kretzmann

Olympic Climate Action, Ed Chadd

Safe Climate Campaign, Dan Becker

Sheep Mountain Alliance, Hilary Cooper

Southern Alliance for Clean Energy, Stephen Smith

Southern Oregon Climate Action Now, Alan Journet

Sustain US, Lesyle Penticoff and Matt Maiorana

Western Nebraska Resources Council, Santana Tamarak


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