Sen. John Hoeven tells Bloomberg news that his sources in Washington say President Obama will reject Keystone XL during the August recess. He won’t identify them, And the White House and State Department had no comment on the matter.
The most interesting part of the article is the response from TransCanada.
“If indeed these rumors are true with what Senator Hoeven has said today, it’s a victory for our opponents,” James Millar, a TransCanada spokesman, said Tuesday by phone. “We would simply be making a choice of saying ‘Yes’ to oil from Iran and Venezuela and ‘No’ to oil from Canada and the U.S. Bakken.”
That’s just some old-fashioned scaremongering. We’re all supposed to wet ourselves over the prospect of getting oil from scary bad people in Iran and Venezuela.
Another way to frame the issue is, we’re saying no to allowing our vital economic and environmental resources to be placed in perpetual risk for the profit of foreign corporations. If you ask me, the very real threat of contaminating the Ogallala Aquifer is far more frightening than phantom fears of Venezuela and Iran.
Another interesting comment comes from a Canadian market analyst.
“The earliest we’ll now see it, we think, is in 2018” under the next U.S. president, said Patrick Kenny, an analyst at National Bank Financial in Calgary. “That’s why Canada and TransCanada have gone with this Plan B.”
“Plan B” involves every other effort to get tar sands oil to the global market. The Energy East pipeline, Enbridge’s Line 61 project in Wisconsin, and the effort to convince First Nations peoples in British Columbia to sacrifice their homes and livelihoods for Big Oil’s profits are ongoing projects.
But what about this “under the next U.S. president” thing? Obviously, a Republican president would be very likely, if not completely dead-on certain, to approve Keystone XL in whatever form it takes after Obama’s rejection (which, you’ll note, we predicted in April). But what gives TransCanada the idea that a Democratic president would be willing to approve it?
Let’s hope Hillary Clinton’s unwillingness to express an opinion on the matter isn’t a clue.