Published On: Fri, Mar 2nd, 2012

Bill Clinton Throws Possible Lifeline to Keystone XL Pipeline

Bill Clinton threw a possible lifeline to the Keystone XL pipeline.

Former president Clinton spoke at an Energy Department conference in Maryland on Wednesday and laid out the way he could see the present administration approving the Keystone XL pipeline.

He laid the blame on pipeline builder TransCanada, reported Politico.com in an article published Wednesday.

“One of the most amazing things to me about this Keystone pipeline deal is that they ever filed that route in the first place since they could’ve gone around the Nebraska Sandhills and avoided most of the dangers, no matter how imagined, to the Ogallala [aquifer] with a different route, which I presume we’ll get now, because the extra cost of running is infinitesimal compared to the revenue that will be generated over a long period of time,” he said.

“So, I think we should embrace it and develop a stakeholder-driven system of high standard for doing the work,” Clinton added.

According to the report, TransCanada this week said it would begin building a section of the pipeline from Oklahoma to the Gulf Coast and reapply for a new permit for the remainder of the project.

Clinton expressed concerns that the increased domestic oil and natural gas production could allow many in the U.S. to lose interest in investing in other, newer cleaner forms of energy.

“There are some hazards to the innovation project, right now. We have massive new recovery technologies in oil and gas which could lead us down the primrose path of thinking [that] we don’t have to keep using less energy and developing clean energy and technologies,” he said.

“A lot of people are saying, ‘Let’s just go for this and nothing else,” he said, after discussing oil production in areas like the Bakken Shale in North Dakota.

“The recent spike in gas prices reminds us of the fragility of relying on just the way we used to do thing not the increasingly apparent cost of fossil fuels on our health and our ecosystem,” said Clinton.

The project is expected to create about 20,000 construction and manufacturing jobs in the U.S. during the construction phase.

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  1. Embracing this Keystone Pipeline is one of the ways we can really try to accomplish some of the economic goals that we have put forth. A project like Keystone in both what it is used for as well the possibilities that we could create from it is valuable. With all the discussion about the pipeline we have heard more about the potential negative effects of it rather than what it can do for us. For one thing, it would put people back to work directly, and help to perhaps create even more jobs down the line which is something that the US cannot afford to turn away in the face of a recovering economy (http://bit.ly/ytP77z).The other thing that this pipeline can do is bridge our necessity for oil with our desire to move to cleaner technology. The dependency that we still have on oil is a very real one so we shouldn’t ignore what our current needs are just to look to future ones without some sort of plan. instead of only blocking out what this pipeline isn’t going to do for us, we should be more forward thinking on what it *will* do for us.

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