As Nebraskans watch politicians in DC stand with Big Oil instead of landowners, we have one request: before you decide on whether to grant or deny the Keystone XL permit, work a day in our boots.
“We have been on the frontlines of this fight from day one,” said Randy Thompson, Nebraska landowner. “We’re wondering what these politicians are thinking. They’re about to say a decision on the pipeline needs to be made in 60 days, but Nebraskans don’t even know where the new route’s going to be. Maybe if the politicians and the President get out of DC and came to Nebraska to work a day in our boots, they would see what we all know–this risky pipeline should be denied.”
It was announced this evening that Congress intends to allow a rider on the payroll tax bill that would require President Obama to decide whether or not to permit the Keystone XL pipeline in 60 days. Just last month the non-partisan Nebraska Unicameral held a special session to pass a law specifically dealing with TransCanada’s flawed route for the Keystone XL. The study of a new route has not even begun yet.
While local groups including Bold Nebraska want the President to sign the bill helping middle-class families, we also want to be clear he must deny the pipeline permit.
“Republicans have bullied their way to get a reckless rider attached to a bill that was supposed to be about helping middle-class families,” stated Jane Kleeb, Bold Nebraska Director. “Fine, you won that unnecessary fight. Now, President Obama must do the right thing for our land, water and families’ health by denying the pipeline permit.”
The pipeline in Nebraska has no established route, landowners are under threats of eminent domain, there are outstanding questions on how tar sands affects our water supply, Nebraska still has no oil spill liability law in place and, worst of all, there continues to be no guarantee from TransCanada that this oil will stay in the United States.
“The pipeline is an export pipeline, giving us no energy security or job security,” said Amy Schaffer, who’s family raises cattle in the Sandhills. “They suggest over and over that rushing this project through is about job generation. Are 2,000 or 5,000 or 20,000 jobs–or whatever number they are throwing around really worth risking our families’ small farms and ranches? We hope the President, or any member of Congress for that matter, would walk a day in our boots before making a decision.”
Both the Obama Administration and the State Department have signaled that the pushing of the Republicans to attach this rider will result in a denial of the pipeline permit.
Action: Call the White House, 202-456-1111, ask President Obama to come to Nebraska and work a day in our boots. Continue to stand with our families and deny the pipeline. Or you can tweet @barackobama work a day in our boots, come to NE and deny risky pipeline, http://boldnebraska.org/signbill_denypipe #noKXL.
Press: for individual interviews, please contact Bold Nebraska staff who can put you in touch with landowners and citizens, Jane Kleeb, 402-705-3622, firstname.lastname@example.org or Malinda Frevert, email@example.com.