Over 100 Scientists and Economists Ask President Obama to Reject Keystone XL

The pipeline will facilitate the growth of the tar sands industry, the specialists say

By on April 9th, 2014 06:42 GMT

Over 100 scientists and economists who are very much concerned about climate change and global warming have recently signed their names on a letter intended for United States President Barack Obama. The letter in question asks that the President reject the proposed Keystone XL pipeline.

Earlier this year, the country's State Department issued a report saying that the Keystone XL pipeline would not in itself be responsible for exacerbating climate change and global warming. According to the specialists behind this report, this is because tar sands are to be exploited with or without the pipeline.

“It's unlikely for one pipeline to change the overall development of the oil sands,” a spokesperson for the State Department explained at that time. Furthermore, “Climate changes are anticipated to occur regardless of any potential effects from the proposed project.”

The over 100 scientists and economists who signed the letter addressed to President Barack Obama, some of whom happen to be Nobel Prize winners and authors of Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change reports, do not agree with the State Department's views on the matter at hand.

On the contrary, they argue that, if approved and built, the Keystone XL pipeline has high chances to facilitate the development of the tar sands industry. In doing so, the pipeline is bound to become a major contributor to climate change, global warming and all the extreme weather manifestations that come with them.

“The Keystone XL pipeline will drive expansion of the energy-intensive strip-mining and drilling of tar sands from under Canada's Boreal forest, increasing global carbon emissions. Keystone XL is a step in the wrong direction,” the scientists and economists write in their letter to US President Barack Obama.

“As scientists and economists, we are concerned about climate change and its impacts. We urge you to reject the Keystone XL tar sands oil pipeline as a project that will contribute to climate change at a time when we should be doing all we can to put clean energy alternatives in place,” they add.

The scientists and economists say that, given his promises to tackle both climate change and global warming, President Obama should feel compelled not to give the thumbs up to the Keystone XL pipeline project. This is because, according to evidence at hand, this pipeline has high chances to push said phenomena into overdrive.

What's more, the specialists make an appeal to Secretary John Kerry and ask that he too prove that he meant what he said when he argued that climate change and global warming were threats to national and international security by rejecting the Keystone XL initiative.

“Rejecting the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline would be a decision based on sound science. The world is looking to the United States to lead through strong climate action at home. This includes rejecting projects that will make climate change worse such as the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline,” the scientists and economists conclude their letter.

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Keystone XL must not be approved, scientists and economists say
   Keystone XL must not be approved, scientists and economists say