Tar Sands Execs Visit U.S. —- Leave Plains Off Itinerary

Last week, Canadian oil executives made stops in the U.S. to hear concerns about tar sands production and the pipelines proposed to carry oil from the sands south. One is the Keystone XL, which would pass through South Dakota. Unfortunately, the Dakotas were missing from their itinerary, according to Paul Blackburn, an attorney for Plains Justice, Vermillion. “Landowners are legitimately concerned that pipelines in fact do rupture on occasion, and they do create a lot of damage. The executives should come and talk to the people who are most at risk from these pipelines.” Blackburn says the recent spill into the Kalamazoo River in Michigan is a prime example of such concerns. The Obama administration says it is waiting for more information on safety and spill response capacity before making a final decision on whether or not to approve Keystone XL. Supporters of the pipeline say it will bring jobs and prosperity to the region, but Blackburn points out that in the past, such jobs often did not go to locals. “Only 10 percent, 15 percent of the jobs building a pipeline go to the local communities. The rest of them are workers brought in from outside the state. In Yankton, it was somewhere on the order of less than a five percent change in income for the time that the pipeline was being constructed.” Despite the delays and opposition, pipeline developer Transcanada says it still hopes to have crude flowing through Keystone XL in early 2013. ((22 NOV 2010))

http://www.publicnewsservice.org/index.php?/content/article/17101-1

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