It's a controversial 1,661-mile Alberta, Canada to Port Arthur, TX pipeline. Earlier, hundreds of environmental activists protested in front of the White House against it.
If completed, it'll carry toxic tar sands oil from Western Canada to refineries on America's Gulf coast. It'll pass through environmentally sensitive areas in six states.
They include waterways and the Ogallala Aquifer. It's one of the world's largest. In America, it supplies about 30% of the nation's irrigation ground water. It's also used for human consumption.
Friends of the Earth says Keystone XL "will carry one of the world's dirtiest fuels: tar sands oil." Moreover, its route "could devastate ecosystems and pollute water sources, and would jeopardize public health."
If completed, it'll double America's dirty tar sands oil supply. At the same time, environmental toxicity will increase exponentially. No matter the stakes, Big Oil wants it. So do Republicans and many Democrats. Obama once again conceded.
TransCanada Corporation is building it. It's spill-prone construction record assures trouble. It promised its Keystone I pipeline would leak once every seven years. In year one, it leaked 12 times or once a month on average. It was unprecedented in US pipeline history.
TarSandsBlockade.org asks "Why Oppose KXL?"
For many reasons, it states. NASA scientist James Hansen calls it "a fuse to the largest carbon bomb on the planet."
All pipelines spill. Avoidance is impossible. Large-scale environmental damage is too great a price to pay. TransCanada said up to 700,000 gallons of tar sands crude could leak without detection. In other words, safeguards are weak and ineffective.
Pipeline construction abuses eminent domain. TransCanada "intimidated landowners" along its route to contractually accede to its demands. In addition, the company "fraudulently steals land from private citizens through eminent domain."
Water contamination is certain. The Carrizo-Wilcox Aquifer (CWA) is threatened. In March 2011, water resources & environmental engineer/consultant Lawrence Dunbar said CWA spillage would be environmentally disastrous. Human and natural resources would be impacted.
Release of enough tar sands contaminants would make affected water resources unfit for human consumption. CWA "is one of the greatest assets of the East-Central region of Texas. It provides water for agriculture, industry, and human consumption and use."
It's far too valuable to contaminate. KXL assures it. Remediation would be hard to impossible to achieve.
According to Cornell University's Global Labor Institute, KXL will also destroy more jobs than it creates. Its September 2011 "Pipe Dreams?" report said job creation claims lack credibility.
At best up to 4,650 temporary ones will be created. In two years or less they'll be gone. "KXL will not be a major source of US jobs, nor will it play any substantial role at all in putting Americans back to work."
Moreover, diverting tar sands oil "now supplying Midwest refineries, so it can be sold at higher prices to the Gulf Coast and export markets (means) Midwest (consumers) could be paying 10 to 20 cents more per gallon for gasoline and diesel fuel."