For Immediate Release
Obama Rejects Keystone XL Pipeline in Key Win for Climate, Wildlife
WASHINGTON - In a crucial victory for the climate, wildlife and the millions who spoke against it, President Obama rejected the Keystone XL project today, saying that building the tar sands oil pipeline is not in the national interest.
Over the past four years, scientists, environmentalists, tribes, farmers, celebrities and business people joined forces to fight the pipeline, with more than 2 million comments submitted to the U.S. State Department, tens of thousands participating in rallies against Keystone in all 50 states, and thousands of citizens arrested in peaceful civil disobedience.
“This is a historic moment, not just for what it means about avoiding the impacts of this disastrous pipeline but for all of those who spoke out for a healthy, livable climate and energy policies that put people and wildlife ahead of pollution and profits,” said Valerie Love with the Center for Biological Diversity. “President Obama did the right thing, but he didn’t do it alone: Millions of Americans made their voices heard on this issue, and will continue pressing Obama and other political leaders to do what’s necessary to avoid climate catastrophe.”
The president laid out criteria for the Keystone decision in his speech at Georgetown University in 2013, saying that he would only approve the pipeline “only if this project doesn’t significantly exacerbate the problem of carbon pollution.” In light of clear evidence that the pipeline would contribute to climate change, the president kept his promise and rejected the project.
“History will hopefully remember this as a moment when the tide began to turn significantly against the forces that have fueled the climate crisis for so long. And there’s no doubt that this hard-earned win attests to the power of the climate movement and sends an undeniable message that Americans want clean energy now,” Love said. “We still have a lot of work to do to get off fossil fuels, but this is proof we have power and we’re on the right track.”
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.