First letter: Opposing the XL

This letter appeared in the Pioneer Press on 4/27/2013. It is the first letter to the editor published by Chris Haas, bravo! If you would also like to write letters to the editor, please contact our SD64 DFL letter writing team.

I oppose having diluted bitumen, acidic crude oil pulled from tar sands, pouring down the proposed Keystone XL pipeline. It has a reasonable chance of leaking into the source of water for America’s breadbasket, the Ogallala aquifer. The State Department’s 45-day public comment period ended April 22. Nearly a million voices cried out, mostly opposed to building the XL pipeline. The EPA reported “environmental objections” due to concerns like “… (greenhouse gas) emissions from oil sands crude could be 81 percent greater than emissions from the average crude refined in the United States.”

A foreign corporation, TransCanada, would build and maintain this pipeline to access the global market. Both the Cornell University Global Labor Institute and the State Department have debunked the job creation myth. TransCanada still has an environmental disaster on its hands in the Kalamazoo River, due to the 2010 Enbridge diluted bitumen spill. Ten oil spills have occurred in the United States and Canada since March 19, including the 5,000-barrel spill in Mayflower, Ark. Ranchers, environmentalists and scientists agree: Oppose the building of the XL pipeline.

Christopher K. Haas, St. Paul