The proposed Keystone XL pipeline would carry oil from Canada through Montana, South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas, Texas and Oklahoma. It would connect to an existing oil pipeline and have minimal effects on global warming, according to proponents.
Here are five arguments supporters use to continue the extension of TransCanada's pipeline:
The pipeline would help bring energy independence to the U.S. The alliance with Canada could build a North American energy infrastructure to outperform the oil produced by OPEC, according to Dr. Bernard L. Weinstein, associate director of the Maguire Energy Institute at Southern Methodist University.
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Robert Bryce, a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute, wrote a 2011 National Review article that pointed out the benefits of oil from the pipeline
over the use of coal, a major contributor to greenhouse gas emissions. Oil production from the pipeline would help cut dependence on Middle East and Venezuela oil by 40 percent, according to Petro Industry News.
The Keystone pipeline even contributes to cleaner energy in the long run than other means of energy production, according to Dr. Patrick Moore of Greenspirit Strategies Ltd. and a former director of Greenpeace International. He told Fox Business News in 2011
that Canada is a friendly ally that has strong environmental laws when it comes to drilling.
The oil sands from the Canadian mining operation are completely reclaimed, he said. The stream cleaning process includes putting the sand back in the area and covering it with new vegetation. Moore said it was the safest way to transport oil through the U.S.
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3. According to The New York Times, the construction of the pipeline
would create some 42,000 jobs during a two-year phase per a U.S. State Department review. Jobs in the hospitality and other industries along the route would far outnumber construction jobs. Building the pipeline would add to the tax base of local communities and contribute some $3.4 billion to the U.S. gross national product.
A major argument by supporters is that the oil in Canada would be produced anyway, even if the extended pipeline were not built. Other industries would extract the oil for global needs, the State Department noted. Rail transportation of the oil would expand, causing further environmental hazards for global warming, reports The New York Times.
5. According to Harvard Magazine
, environmental damage would be minimized with the combination of new U.S. policies and the strict environmental regulations of Canada, wrote Michael B. McElroy, a professor of environmental studies at Harvard.
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