Citizen Action Monitor

Estimated 12,000 Keystone protesters circle White House while Obama golfs

No 328 Posted by fw, November 7, 2011

“The protest was organized by the Natural Resources Defence Council, a U.S. environmental group. Spokeswoman Susan Casey-Lefkowitz told CBC News many Americans are concerned with the potential environmental impact of the pipeline. “Tarsands expansion, climate change and particularly this pipeline is a major concern for many, many Americans,” she said, “and the numbers are growing every day. “You know, for the president, it’s about making sure he holds true to the promises he made to fight climate change,” she said. “And to the other candidates, it’s about calling them out when they act like climate change is not real, which of course it is.” However, Obama was golfing in northern Virginia for most of the afternoon. His motorcade arrived back at the White House just before 5 p.m. without any interference from the protesters.” CBC News, Nov. 6, 2011

More from the CBC News report below. But first, here’s a video clip of the action at the White House on Sunday, November 6, 2011 — White House Keystone XL Pipeline Protest Uploaded by Abacusventure on Nov 6, 2011 —

 

And here’s a further extract from the CBC story — Keystone protesters surround White House – published on Nov 6, 2011.

Police on the scene estimated the crowd at about 5,000-strong while organizers claimed as many as 12,000 people were on hand at the peak of the protest.

The Obama administration is currently weighing whether to give the green light to Keystone XL. The U.S. State Department is making the ruling because the pipeline crosses an international border, but the president has said the final decision will reflect his views and suggested he isn’t swayed by the argument that the pipeline will create thousands of jobs.

“Folks in Nebraska, like all across the country, aren’t going to say to themselves, ‘We’ll take a few thousand jobs if it means our kids are potentially drinking water that would damage their health,”‘ Obama said in a recent interview with an Omaha TV station.

A decision on the pipeline was supposed to be made by the end of the year, but the State Department suggested last week that it might defer the decision as they continue to assess whether Keystone XL is in the national interest of the United States.

Keystone XL has become a political hot potato for the Obama administration, especially since the release of emails that suggest a cozy relationship between State Department officials and TransCanada’s chief lobbyist, Paul Elliott. Elliott worked on Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s unsuccessful presidential bid in 2008. There have also been allegations that the State Department failed to do an impartial environmental assessment of Keystone XL by hiring an environmental consulting firm, Houston-based Cardno Entrix, recommended to it by TransCanada itself.

With a presidential election less than a year away, key Obama advisers are reportedly growing increasingly nervous about losing supporters if they approve Keystone XL. The pipeline’s opponents point to spills along oil pipelines and argue the Keystone XL project is a disaster waiting to happen since it would carry millions of barrels a week of carbon-intensive oilsands crude through environmentally fragile areas of the U.S. Great Plains.

RELATED VIDEO

  • CNN Promotes Keystone XL Tar Sands Pipeline Uploaded by climatebrad on Oct 28, 2011. Despite the video’s title, this is a fairly balanced report of job hopes versus environmental concerns surrounding the Keystone XL pipeline. And the report features a scene of students confronting Obama over the pipeline. It’s worth a look.

 

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This entry was posted on November 7, 2011 by in environmental activism, political action and tagged , .
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