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Bold Nebraska Response on Senate Vote to Approve Keystone XL

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Farmer Jim Tarnick on his land near Fullerton, NE that is on the proposed route of the Keystone XL pipeline. Tarnick is among landowner plaintiffs to a lawsuit challenging TransCanada’s eminent domain authority. (Photo by Mary Anne Andrei)

The U.S. Senate voted on Jan. 29 to approve S.1, a bill to fast-track the Keystone XL pipeline around the Presidential permitting process. President Obama has stated his intention to VETO the bill. Bold Nebraska has sent over 1,100 veto and reject pens to Pres. Obama.

Senators Sasse and Fischer both voted for the bill allowing TransCanada to use eminent domain for private gain.

Statement of Bold Nebraska director Jane Kleeb:

“Senators who love Keystone just voted to approve eminent domain for private gain and to risk our water, all for one foreign corporation. The good news for landowners in the Heartland is Pres. Obama cares about our land and water and will veto this reckless bill. Farmers and ranchers need stability in their government so they can plan crops and development of their land. A full rejection of Keystone can not come soon enough for landowners.” —Jane Kleeb

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Thursday, Jan. 29, 2015

Contact: Jane Kleeb, jane@boldnebraska.org402-705-3622
Mark Westlund, mark.westlund@sierraclub.org415-977-5719
Valerie Love, vlove@biologicaldiversity.org510-274-9713
Jake Thompson, jthompson@nrdc.org202-289-2387
David Turnbull, david@priceofoil.org202-316-3499
Elijah Zarlin, ezarlin@credoaction.com415-369-2014

Environmental, Landowner Groups Respond to Senate Vote on Keystone XL

This afternoon, the Senate voted to support a foreign oil corporation at the expense of American interests by passing legislation that would force approval of the controversial Keystone XL tar sands pipeline, which would threaten land and water along its route and have a disastrous impact on carbon emissions and climate change.

Environmental and landowner groups reacted to the passage of this legislation, which President Obama has already committed to veto, by urging him to finally close the book on this toxic project and reject the permit for the pipeline once and for all. Pipeline fighters from across the United States have already sent over 1,100 veto and reject pens to President Obama, with more on the way. Photos of the pens are available here.

Jane Kleeb, Director of Bold Nebraska: “Senators who love Keystone just voted to approve eminent domain for private gain and to risk our water, all for one foreign corporation. The good news for landowners in the Heartland is President Obama cares about our land and water and will veto this reckless bill. Farmers and ranchers need stability in their government so they can plan crops and development of their land. A full rejection of Keystone cannot come soon enough for landowners.”

Michael Brune, Executive Director of the Sierra Club: “Ultimately, the Republican Senate’s tar sands tactics are going to amount to nothing. President Obama has made it clear he will reject these attacks on his authority and repeatedly stated that he will reject the tar sands pipeline if it contributes to the climate crisis. The President has all the evidence he needs to reject Keystone XL now, and we are confident that he will.”

Danielle Droitsch, Director of NRDC’s Canada project: “The new, Republican-controlled Congress just delivered a New Year’s present to big polluters, with the Senate passage of a bill that would force approval of the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline. The vote follows a similar measure approved by the House on Jan. 9. President Obama should swiftly veto this legislation – and then reject the proposed pipeline once and for all. The project would transport Canadian tar sands oil – the dirtiest fuel on the planet – through America’s heartland, only to be refined and then shipped abroad. It would threaten our waters, our lands and worsen carbon pollution. It’s absolutely not in our national interest.’’

League of Conservation Voters (LCV) Senior Vice President of Government Affairs Tiernan Sittenfeld: “This dirty and dangerous bill is soon to meet its well-deserved fate – a presidential veto. We remain confident that President Obama will continue to build on his incredible climate leadership by rejecting the Keystone XL pipeline once and for all. It’s no surprise that Majority Leader McConnell’s first order of business was standing with polluters, but the debate over the last several weeks provided ample opportunity for senators to show whose side they’re on. On vote after vote, senators faced a choice between standing with polluters and protecting our air, land, water, and climate for future generations. We commend those senators who consistently chose the latter.”

Bill Snape, Senior Counsel with the Center for Biological Diversity: “The new congressional majority simply doesn’t get that climate change is happening now, that handing our lands over to foreign corporations is wrong, and that clean water and healthy wildlife are more important than a pipeline full of super dirty oil that we don’t even need. President Obama needs to veto this sham immediately.”

Stephen Kretzmann, Executive Director of Oil Change International: “The Senate has voted to approve Keystone XL, and has chosen to once again side with Big Oil’s money over our climate and our future.  In other news, the sun will set in the west this evening.  We look forward to the President’s veto of this bill, and his ultimate rejection of the permit for this dangerous tar sands pipeline.”

Elijah Zarlin, Senior Campaign Manager at CREDO: “The Republican’s Keystone XL obsession is about one thing and one thing only – a direct payback to Big Oil, specifically to the Koch brothers who likely spent more than anyone else to elect the Republican Senate, and also happen to be the largest non-Canadian leaseholder in the Alberta tar sands. The American people oppose Congress forcing a decision on Keystone XL, and given the actual problems we are facing and the solutions available, the notion that Keystone XL should be the first or highest priority of Congress is literally insulting. As long as they continue their Keystone XL obsession, Republicans are turning their back on the American people.”

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Send a #NOKXL pen to Pres. Obama to VETO and REJECT Keystone XL

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