U.S. EPA weighs in on Keystone XL proposal
The environmental watchdog is calling a draft environmental impact assessment for the project "inadequate"
Keystone XL continues to face an uphill climb. Two weeks after U.S. Congressman Henry Waxman dismissed the proposed bitumen conduit as “a multi-billion dollar investment to expand our reliance on the dirtiest source of transportation fuel available,” the country’s Environmental Protection Agency is calling a draft assessment of the pipeline’s environmental impacts “inadequate.”
Before approving the export pipeline, the EPA wants the U.S. State Department to consider how the development of advanced biofuels, electric cars and potential changes to fuel-economy standards will affect U.S. demand for crude oil. As these things go, the EPA is also concerned about oil sands-related greenhouse gas emissions and the implications of wedding domestic energy policies to increased production from Alberta’s bitumen belt.
In a letter to the U.S. State Department dated July 16, Cynthia Giles, a compliance and enforcement administrator with the EPA, writes, “Alongside the national security benefits of importing crude oil from a stable trading partner, we believe the national security implications of expanding the nation’s long-term commitment to a relatively high carbon source of oil should also be considered.”
The document also urges decision-makers to assess what impact the Keystone project will have on aboriginal communities, plus examine air aquality issues, pipeline safety and spill response mechanisms.
Have a look at the letter below: