The State Dept’s Keystone XL pipeline draft impact statement is out for public review


Today the U.S. Department of State released a Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS) for the new Presidential Permit application for the proposed Keystone XL pipeline. “The lengthy assessment did not give environmentalists the answer they had hoped for in the debate over the project’s climate impact,” the Washington Post reports. “But the detailed environmental report … also questions one of the strongest arguments for the pipeline, by suggesting America can meet its energy needs over the next decade without it.” Sierra Club executive director Michael Brune said: “We’re mystified as to how the State Department can acknowledge the negative effects of the Earth’s dirtiest oil on our climate, but at the same time claim that the proposed pipeline will ‘not likely result in significant adverse environmental effects.’”

The full text of the SEIS is here: U.S. Department of State, Keystone XL Pipeline Project, Draft Supplementary Impact Statement (SEIS)

From the State Dept Keystone XL SEIS pipeline application process fact sheet

The Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement has been prepared consistent with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). The document is a draft technical review of potential environmental impacts. The Draft SEIS includes a comprehensive review of the new route in Nebraska as well as any significant new circumstances or information that is now available on the largely unchanged route in Montana and South Dakota. It also expands and updates information that had been included in the 2011 Final Environmental Impact Statement that was prepared for the previous Keystone XL application. It does not make any recommendations on whether the pipeline should be approved or denied.

Once the Draft SEIS has been published by the EPA, the public will have 45 days to comment on the document. Those comments can be addressed to the following mailbox: 

Washington Post: Keystone XL pipeline would have little impact on climate change, State Department analysis says

Sierra Club statement

In a May 2012 op-ed in The New York Times, NASA climate scientist James Hansen wrote regarding Alberta tar sands extraction, “If Canada proceeds, and we do nothing, it will be game over for the climate. … We need to start reducing emissions significantly, not create new ways to increase them.”

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3 Responses to The State Dept’s Keystone XL pipeline draft impact statement is out for public review

  1. janel says:

    As far as I read of the EIR it is saying the actual building of the pipeline has insignificant enviro impacts. It doesn’t assess the effects of the tar sands or all the oil that would be pumped out, it is just impacts of the pipeline. Really misleading I think.

  2. Clarice says:

    This is a no brainer. Stop this insane pipeline from going thru. There isn’t any benefit at all to us but there are proven results that this is an extreme danger to not only those of us in the United States if this goes thru, but to the world. Stop this insane policy of increasing Global Warming and save us from those who wish to only profit from their refusal to see the destruction they have heaped on this planet for only monetary gain. Show the world and especially us that you can do the right and Moral stand and stop this insane pipeline.

  3. nbj says:

    What’s insane is to think stopping the pipeline will change anything about global warming. The U.S.A. has no say in the extraction of the oil in Canada – no matter how “dirty” it is. Stopping the pipeline will simply negatively affect U.S.A. strategic interests. If the pipeline isn’t allowed through the U.S., the oil will travel by rail (considerably more risky for the environment), or perhaps new Canadian pipeline to the west coast of Canada and directly on to China. With the pipeline through the U.S.A., the U.S.A. has some strategic control of it in global strategy or energy emergencies. The oil only has to travel about 50ft across the border. The only part of the pipeline the president controls is that 50ft. The rest of the pipeline can be built. The pipeline will improve and expand service for U.S.A. oil movement – ultimately including areas such as from the Bakken – to shipping ports and refineries. Newer pipelines will be environmentally safer than old.

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