Canada pleased by pipeline progress

 Ogallala Aquifer MapTransCanada’s proposed changes draw praise

There’s momentum building in support of the new route for the Keystone XL Pipeline, as the editorial yesterday in Canada’s “Globe and Mail” highlights.

Approval was delayed when President Obama refused to be pressed into signing off on the project when Republicans tried to force his hand, noting that to do so before final decisions were made about the route would likely open up lawsuits that would possibly further delay the construction.

Meanwhile, TransCanada has quietly pressed ahead with plans to build “to the border” (without securing the politically volatile crossing permit) at the same time as they’ve been working with Nebraska to find a viable alternative route that protects the Sand Hills region of Ogallala aquifer. Click on the map to the right if you want a better view of the area in question.

So with gas prices threatening to be a big issue in the U.S. presidential campaign, particularly with the GOP messaging machine already struggling to downplay the economic recovery, Keystone is moving back toward the spotlight a bit – even though any impact on U.S. fuel prices wouldn’t come until the line was open and flowing, which is obviously several years.

It’s great that President Obama has directed federal agencies to expedite a 485-mile line and other pipelines that alleviate “choke points.” He risks a backlash from the anti-oil parts of the Democratic electorate, but we can’t simply stop using oil; we need to support those systems while developing alternatives. Operating Engineers are typically very concerned with the environment: many of our members and their families are avid hunters and fishermen, who want our land and water resources preserved as a treasure for future generations.

Local 49 remains focused on the impact on jobs for Operating Engineers, and urges you to contact your Senator and U.S. Representative to voice your support for this North American energy source – especially those running for re-election this November. Our members are voters, and we know that the real job creator is consumer demand, which starts with a vibrant, thriving middle class in America – and our financial security is closely tied to having good jobs so we can complain about the cost of commuting.
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About local49

IUOE Local 49 was formed in 1927. Today we are more than 13,000 men and women in Minnesota, North and South Dakota with contracts for highway/heavy and building contractors, well drillers, equipment repair shops, welding shops, sand and gravel suppliers, counties, municipalities, hospitals, school districts, cemeteries, and more.

Posted on April 23, 2012, in energy, infrastructure, Jobs, Operating Engineers, union and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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