WASHINGTON, Dec. 5, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Three weeks after the State Department and President announced plans to seek further study of the proposed Keystone XL crude oil pipeline, members of the Senate and House announced plans to fast-track the pipeline permitting process. On November 30, 2011, Senate Republicans introduced a bill to try to force the President's hand on the issue – requiring a decision on whether or not to proceed with the project within 60 days of the bill's passage. Two days later, House Republicans released their plans to expedite the permitting process and also to take the decision away from the State Department and to grant it to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.
"Pressure from Big Oil and the Chamber of Commerce should not be allowed to override thorough consideration of the dangerous consequences of the KXL pipeline," stated Green America's director of strategic outreach, Fran Teplitz. "Green America opposes construction of the pipeline due to the perils it presents for human health, the environment and climate change, as well as the tremendous setback the pipeline would mean for development of our domestic, renewable energy sector."
Green America's director of climate programs, Todd Larsen, added, "Some in Congress are trying to use our country's dire need for job creation as an excuse to build this pipeline. Data on job creation commissioned by the oil industry, while still in circulation, has been grossly inflated. We will generate more good quality, lasting jobs through investment in clean energy."
The Congressional plans show no regard for the level of study required of the massive pipeline project, which would extend from Alberta, Canada to the Texas Gulf Coast. Public opposition to the pipeline has been growing from diverse sectors, most recently culminating in a major visibility action at the White House on November 6th involving thousands of people. Green America's Green Business Network members signed a letter to the Administration dated November 17th, opposing construction of the Keystone XL pipeline and urging significant federal investment in clean energy. The coalition letter garnered more than 800 supporters from businesses nationally.
In response to the GOP's new pipeline strategy, Senator Bernie Sanders, who has been vocal against the project, stated: "The more the American people learn about this project, and the significant greenhouse gas emissions and pollution increases it would cause, the stronger the opposition to it will become."
About Green America: Green America (www.GreenAmerica.org) is the nation's leading green economy organization. Founded in 1982, Green America provides the economic strategies, organizing power and practical tools for businesses and individuals to solve today's social and environmental problems.
SOURCE Green America, Washington, DC