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Keystone pandering

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Sunday, Nov. 10, 2013, 9:00 p.m.

With a new study demolishing environmentalists' arguments against the Keystone XL pipeline — which would carry Canadian tar-sands oil to Gulf Coast refineries — it's clear that the Obama administration's foot-dragging opposition to the project is pure political pandering to anti-growth leftists.

Even Gina McCarthy, head of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, acknowledges that without the pipeline, Canada will export tar-sands oil elsewhere — including China, which will burn it without U.S.-style emissions controls. And Canada still will export tar-sands oil to America, mainly by rail. Either way, more pollution will be emitted to move it than if the pipeline's built.

Now, The Washington Free Beacon reports, IHS Cambridge Energy Resource Associates confirms that Keystone XL rejection actually could increase emissions, violating President Obama's criterion for approval: no increase in U.S. carbon emissions. The IHS study says “wheel to well” — extraction point to refining point — emissions for domestic oil are potentially higher than those for Canadian tar-sands oil.

IHS also says tar-sands oil is no more corrosive to pipelines than other forms of crude oil. And American Action Forum data show that per unit of oil, pipelines have fewer hazmat incidents than any other large-scale transportation method.

By not embracing this job-creating, safe, environmentally friendly pipeline plan, the Obama administration pleases only those still opposed despite all these facts — who truly redefine “eco-wacko.”

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