News Section: National Government
Buchanan Votes for Keystone XL Pipeline
WASHINGTON – U.S. Rep. Vern Buchanan, R-FL, voted to advance the construction of the Keystone XL Pipeline this week – a shovel-ready project that proponents bill as a way to reduce foreign dependance of oil, while creating domestic jobs. Earlier this year, the President denied a permit for the 1,700-mile pipeline connecting Canadian oil fields with American refineries. The Keystone project was included in a broader transportation bill that passed the House 293-127.
“America has been addicted to Middle Eastern for too long,” said Buchanan in a release. “The Keystone Pipeline offers us a prime opportunity to increase our nation’s energy security and strengthen the economy by creating 20,000 American jobs. As gas prices approach $4 a gallon, it’s time to put aside the partisan rhetoric and start tackling America’s energy crisis. I urge the President to authorize this project immediately.”
If approved, the pipeline would transport crude oil from Canada's tar sands region in Alberta to refineries along the Texas Gulf Coast. Once complete, the pipeline will reportedly carry 830,000 barrels of oil per day from Canada to the U.S. Canada is currently the largest exporter of crude oil to the United States, supplying over 20 percent of our daily oil imports, followed by Mexico and Saudi Arabia, each of whom export about half as much into the U.S.
|Rep. Vern Buchanan (R-Longboat Key)|
“This country needs a comprehensive, ‘all-of-the-above’ energy plan that reduces our dependence on foreign oil,” said Buchanan. “With gas prices threatening an already-struggling economy, it’s time to approve the Keystone Pipeline and the thousands of jobs it will support.”
Tar sand is a controversial method of harvesting an unconventional oil source composed of a naturally-occurring slurry of sand, water and clay, as well as a dense and extremely thick, sticky form of semi-solid petroleum, referred to as bitumen, which is then separated and refined. Critics contend that its energy-laden separation process and relatively-dirty production footprint make it a non-starter as an energy source.
Last month, former President Bill Clinton endorsed the project, saying the federal government should “embrace” the Keystone XL Pipeline and move forward with its construction. President Obama had first put the project in the hands of the State Department. But pressure mounted when it was discovered that Secretary of State Hilary Clinton's 2008 Deputy Campaign Director was chief lobbyist for TransCanada's chief lobbyist. Transcanada is the Candadian company that is hoping to build the Pipeline.
More than 1,000 American citizens were arrested in front of the White House for protesting the pipeline this summer during a march on the White House by over 12,000 people opposing the project because of the environmental risks.
Click here to add a comment to this page