Protestors Spurn International Pipeline

Written By Brianna Panzica

Posted November 7, 2011

On Sunday, upwards of 10,000 protestors rallied at the White House to make their voices heard.

The goal? Prevent the construction of an oil sands pipeline.

TransCanada Corp (NYSE: TRP) has been planning the construction of their Keystone XL pipeline, a line that will extend from tar sands in Alberta, Canada, through the Midwest of the United States, and to refineries in Texas and the Gulf Coast.

The State Department must make the final decision in regards to the pipeline since it would cross international borders, Bloomberg reports.

The project would be worth about $7 billion dollars, and it would significantly reduce dependence on the Middle East for oil.  That’s one of the main features drawing the United States to the project.

But environmentalists aren’t having it.

As Bloomberg reports, many fear the effects of the unconventional oil sands extraction method.  It releases heavy concentrations of carbon, they say.

And a spill would be devastating.  Not only would it be difficult to control, but it would also affect drinking water, among other things.

Former Keystone employee John Bolenbaugh attended the protests, fighting against what he once worked for. He told the Huffington Post:

“I will not accept a job for a tar sands pipeline.  I will not do it because I’ve seen the devastation and the sick people from what a tar sands spill does when there is a leak and there’s gonna be a leak.  It’s gonna happen sooner or later.”

Protestors hope they can influence the President to veto a ‘yes’ from the State Department, if it comes down to it.

Celebrities backed the cause as well.  Actor Mark Ruffalo played a big part in the day’s protests.

But the upsides to the pipeline might influence the government as well, especially in the election atmosphere.  It is estimated that going ahead with the project would create at least 20,000 jobs, Bloomberg reports.

And independence from the Middle East is becoming increasingly more important, a fact that TransCanada officials stressed.

The State Department is expected to make a decision in the next few months.

TransCanada was down .81% on Monday morning to $41.39.

That’s all for now,


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