Archives

Tagged ‘Keystone XL‘

Keystone Rejected, Big Carbon Undaunted

TeleSUR

November 29, 2015

by Paul Street

Watch: Dec 2, 2015: “Oil glut so bad people are putting it back in the ground.”

 

The Masters of Oil are not stupid.

Some time ago, I suggested in one of my many critiques of the corporate-neoliberal, imperial, and eco-cidal Obama administration that Obama’s ultimate signing off on the Keystone XL Pipeline (KXL) – meant to carry highly toxic Tar Sands oil from Alberta, Canada the Gulf of Mexico in the southern U.S. – was a foregone conclusion. As of last November 6th, I stand corrected on the specific policy in question, but not on the underlying corporate-captive and environmentally lethal nature of the administration. Here as in so many other areas the Obama story remains the same: fake-progressive symbolism cloaks deadly state-capitalist substance.

Why did a president who has opened up vast swaths of US coast line and the environmentally hyper-sensitive Chukchi Sea to deep-water oil drilling, who signed off on the southern branch of Keystone, and who has openly celebrated the nation’s ecologically disastrous hydraulic fracturing (“fracking”) boom say no to KXL? Given his broader, Big Oil-friendly environmental record, his claim to have turned the pipeline down out of concern for the ravages of climate change does not pass the smell test. It should not be taken seriously.

The deeper reality is colored by two very basic facts.  First, Obama had no choice.  The large and fairly mainstream anti-climate change protest movement that had arisen against KXL, the upcoming Paris climate summit, and global opinion calling for serious climate action put the slimy Obama administration between (kind of like the North American gas and oil whose fracking-based extraction the president has heralded) a rock and hard place.  How could he go to Paris and credibly advance the U.S. petro-imperial agenda against serous and binding global carbon emission and extraction limits with a Keystone yoke around his neck, placed there in part by high-profile climate change opponents like Bill McKibben and James Hansen? Obama’s  ability to claim moral and political authority in Paris required making McKibben – leader of the anti-climate change organization “350.org” – happy on Keystone.

Secondly and just as important, the Big Carbon capitalist elite is not stupid and has been preparing for the eventuality the Obama would be unable to sign off on KXL. It has invested in alternatives. As the leading environmental activist Jay Thomas Taber notes, “Delaying KXL…merely means the Tar Sands toxic bitumen will make its way to the Gulf of Mexico by other routes, which incidentally are already operating, making KXL redundant for now–the real reason for the celebrated KXL ‘rejection’” The KXL’s non-approval “no longer matters to oil exporters” thanks to a glut of oil reaching the Gulf from millions of acres of land Obama opened up in 23 U.S. states for the great American fracking surge and thanks to “plans to develop pipeline and oil train terminal infrastructure on the West Coast of Canada and the Northwest US.”

The KXL’s difficulties have incidentally proved a boon for http://www.counterpunch.org/2012/04/24/inconvenient-truths-about-tar-sands-action/ the world’s third richest person and (curiously enough) a leading financial contributor (through the Tides Foundation) to McKibben’s organization.  Buffett owns Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad (BNSF), which carries U.S. and Canadian oil and gas across North America. As “The Insider” (pseudonym for an activist employed in the U.S. foundation sector) noted three and a half years ago: “the tar sands oil will be transported with or without KXL…This is due to the fact that one of President Obama’s most loyal billionaire patrons, Warren Buffett …owns.. BNSF,[which] has the capacity and will to rail morebarrels of tar sands crude per day to the U.S. than does the Keystone XL.”

The leading environmental reporter and activist Steve Horn notes that “for years behind the scenes – as most media attention and activist energy has gone into fighting Keystone XL North – the Obama Administration has quietly been approving hundreds of miles-long pieces of pipeline owned by industry goliath Enbridge and other companies.…That pipeline system does the very same thing the rest of TransCanada’s Keystone Pipeline System at-large also already does [without KXL]… it brings Alberta’s tar sands oil across the heartland of the U.S. and down to the U.S. Gulf coast.”

Along the way, Obama has quietly signed off on – and expedited through executive order – the building of every other pipeline not named Keystone XL. “While people have been debating Keystone,” the head of the American Oil Pipeline Association recently crowed, “we have actually built the equivalent of 10 Keystones. And no one’s complained or said anything.”

Keystone was not intended only to carry dirty tar sands oil from Alberta to the Gulf.  It was also meant to carry oil extracted in the giant, glowing fracking fields of North Dakota. All that oil is easily shipped through existing and planned pipelines, rail, and trucking lines.

The big capitalist masters of oil extraction, shipping, and refining can easily handle the suspension of KXL. They know that Obama’s action doesn’t really interrupt their project of turning the world into a giant Greenhouse Gas Chamber.

That’s the second main reason that the deeply conservative Obama made his fake-progressive legacy-burnishing move. He was on safe capitalist ground. It’s not unlike Obama’s recent symbolic posturing and policy half-gestures on racist mass incarceration, dependent on the fact that the nation’s bipartisan elite has already decided that America’s monumental imprisonment of poor and nonwhite Americans may have finally reached the outer limits of profitable functionality.

“To celebrate this individual event of Keystone XL,” Forrest Palmer and Corey Morningstar remind us at Wrong Kind of Green, “is shortsighted. It is time to stop celebrating individual battles when we are losing the war” to save livable ecology.

The former Reagan administration Assistant Treasury Secretary Paul Craig Roberts recently opined that “revolution throughout the West” is one possible outcome for the current neoliberal capitalist assault on decent living standards, healthy food, and environmental health. “Once…the French people discover that they have lost all control over their diet to Monsanto and American agribusiness,” Roberts muses, “members of the French government that delivered France into dietary bondage to toxic foods are likely to be killed in the streets….Events of this sort are possible throughout the West as people discover that they have lost all control over every aspect of their lives and that their only choice is revolution or death.”

With the ever more horrid assault on livable ecology being advanced by the U.S. and global petro-capitalist ruling class through various means but especially via anthropogenic – really capitalogenic– global warming, perhaps the time is right for the French masses to hit the streets and build barricades again in the spirit of 1789-1795. On November 30th, the 21st Session of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (“COP21”) begins in Paris with the goal of making an international agreement to keep global warming below 2°C.

Here is a chilling (no pun intended) dispatch from left author Richard Greeman in Montpellier, reflecting on the French government’s response to the recent terrible Islamic State terror attacks in Paris: “The Hollande government…[is] already preparing to prevent mass demonstrations and other outdoor activities during the upcoming climate summit, allowing the ‘deciders’ to continue to cook the planet in peace.” How perfectly Orwellian: the Islamic State is largely a result of the monumentally criminal U.S. invasion of Iraq, an action that was driven largely by Washington’s desire to control the oil fields of Mesopotamia.

 

[Paul Street is an author in Iowa City, IA.]

 

The Money Behind the “Grassroots” KXL NGO Milieu

Public Good Project

November 24, 2015

by Jay Taber

 

Oil-trains-lined-up-Washinton-coastline.-Photo-by-Paul-K.-Anderson-used-with-permission.

January 2014: In 2007, Warren Buffet’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc. purchased 60% of Union Tank’s parent company, Marmon Holdings Inc. Today, Berkshire owns 90% of the company, according to an annual report for investors, where Buffett implored them to look for the company’s UTLX logo on any tank cars they see passing by. Despite the fact that there have been five crude oil train derailments in the last several months, the crude-by-rail industry is still chugging along and will probably pick up speed in 2014. There were roughly 9,500 carloads of crude oil running the rails in the U.S. in 2008. By 2013, there were more than 400,000, according to the Association of American Railroads. [Source]

In the wake of the KXL suspension, fantasies about political power abound in liberal media, promoting false hope about the non-profit industrial complex, and serious delusions about grassroots political influence. The real KXL story is more complicated, in particular that the NGOs were all funded by Ford Foundation, Rockefeller Brothers, and ‘bomb train’ mogul Warren Buffett, who profited handsomely from the KXL distraction while Tar Sands oil continued to flow, despite the much-hyped media charades by 350.

chi-galena-train-derailment-20150305

March 6, 2015: Six of the BNSF Railway train’s 105 cars derailed in an area where the Galena River meets the Mississippi. The train’s tank cars were a newer model known as the 1232, which was designed during safety upgrades in hopes of keeping cars from rupturing during derailments. But 1232 standard cars involved in three other accidents have split open in the past year. Those other accidents included one last month in West Virginia in which a train carrying 3 million gallons of North Dakota crude derailed, shooting fireballs into the sky, leaking oil into a waterway and burning down a house. [Source

http://www.counterpunch.org/2015/11/12/kxl-rejection-hype-not-hope/

 

[Jay Thomas Taber (O’Neal) derives from the most prominent tribe in Irish history, nEoghan Ua Niall, the chief family in Northern Ireland between the 4th and the 17th centuries. Jay’s ancestors were some of the last great leaders of Gaelic Ireland. His grandmother’s grandfather’s grandfather emigrated from Belfast to South Carolina in 1768. Jay is an associate scholar of the Center for World Indigenous Studies, a correspondent to Forum for Global Exchange, and a contributing editor of Fourth World Journal. Since 1994, he has served as communications director at Public Good Project, a volunteer network of researchers, analysts and activists engaged in defending democracy. As a consultant, he has assisted indigenous peoples in the European Court of Human Rights and at the United Nations. Email: tbarj [at] yahoo.com Website: www.jaytaber.com]

Keystone XL Construction – Deconstructed

Wrong Kind of Green

November 10, 2015

“The only way to use less oil is to use less oil.” — Jeff Gibbs

keystone-pipeline2008

Photo: Construction on the Keystone Pipeline began in 2008.

Many people remain under the assumption that the “Keystone XL” was nothing more than a proposal on paper that, thanks to the campaigning by the non-profit industrial complex (led by 350.org), a proposal that never materialized. This is not surprising as the campaign was deliberately framed this way.

Nothing could be further from the truth.

The entire Keystone Pipeline System (with the exception of the much hyped phase four which constitutes 526 km/ 327 mi of pipeline) has been built and in operation, the first phase having gone into operation back in 2010. Phase 1 (3,456 km/ 2,147 mi) went online in June 2010. Phase 2 (468 km/ 291 mi) went online in February 2011. Phase 3a (700 km/ 435 miles) went online in January 2014. 76 km (47 mi) of additional pipeline will come online in 2016 which will then complete the project.

The Dakota Access is the clone for KXL for carrying oil obtained from the North Dakota Bakken oil/fracking boom (a ecological and social nightmare ignored by the non-profit industrial complex) – but on steroids. What is not understood by most is how paramount Dakota Access (what Steve Horn calls the Keystone XL clone) is in terms of both investment and industry. The Dakota Access makes Phase 4 (the northern leg) of Keystone XL completely insignificant, if not irrelevant, a Trojan Horse if you will. The Dakota Access is the clone for KXL for carrying oil obtained from the North Dakota Bakken oil/fracking boom (an ecological and social nightmare ignored by the non-profit industrial complex) – but on steroids. The pipeline the Dakota Access connects to is located on the MHA Nation (apparently originating from an oil rail transloading facility).

The Keystone clone is the combination of the Dakota Access pipeline and what it connects to: East Gulf Access Pipeline and then Enbridge’s entire system. Although Horn refers to this as the Keystone XL clone, it’s the Keystone Pipeline System on crack in terms of how much oil it’s bringing down to the Gulf: Dakota Access carries up to 7x more Bakken oil than the Bakken Marketlink on-ramp would have for KXL North (up to 750,000 barrels per day verses 100,000 barrels per day).

The Dakota Access connects with the East Gulf Access Pipeline in Patoka, Illinois. That’s the Bakken part of the “clone.” Enbridge’s system is the tar sands portion of it.

The only phase/section of the Keystone Pipeline System that was cancelled was the phase 4 section. So in summary, in actuality, the entire pipeline has been built and put into operation with the exception of 526 km (327 mi) of pipeline with the next section coming online next year. This section (Phase 3b, 76 km/ 47 mi), the Houston Lateral pipeline, which redirects a large swatch of that tar sands oil over to the Houston Ship Channel and the markets it serves, is never discussed except for in investor calls and writings by Horn and a handful of others.

No word yet from the media (of any kind) or the non-profit industrial complex about Warren Buffett’s 21st century rail empire built while all eyes were on Keystone XL. Crude via rail bomb trains have resulted in the deaths of 47 people (including children) in Lac Megantic, Quebec, Canada and the deaths of two others in a separate crude via rail derailment. These deaths are on top of massive ecological devastation from crude via rail derailments that continue to this day , the most recent derailments occurring on November 5th and 8th of 2015.

Further reading:

Keystone XL: The Art of NGO Discourse | Part I, April 12, 2013: http://www.wrongkindofgreen.org/2013/04/12/keystone-xl-the-art-of-ngo-discourse-part-i/

Keystone XL: The Art of NGO Discourse – Part II, June 4, 2013: http://www.wrongkindofgreen.org/2013/06/04/keystone-xl-the-art-of-ngo-discourse-part-ii/

Keystone XL: The Art of NGO Discourse – Part III | Beholden to Buffett, October 25, 2013: http://www.wrongkindofgreen.org/2013/10/25/keystone-xl-the-art-of-ngo-discourse-part-iii-beholden-to-buffett/

 

 

 

KXL Rejection: The Real Story

CWIS Center for World Indigenous Studies

Fourth World Eye Blog

November 10, 2015

by Jay Taber

Washington, DC - February 15: President Barack Obama awards the Medal of Freedom to distinguished Americans including Warren Buffett, left, at a ceremony in the East Room of th White House, February, 15, 2011 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Bill O'Leary/The Washington Post)

Washington, DC – February 15, 2011: President Barack Obama awards the Medal of Freedom to  distinguished Americans including Warren Buffett, left, at a ceremony in the East Room of the White House, in Washington, DC. (Photo by Bill O’Leary/The Washington Post)

 

The tribes that kept KXL out of their territories are understandably pleased by the momentary suspension of that pipeline project. This editorial does not diminish their ‘victory’, but rather tempers the euphoria around the KXL rejection with a dose of reality. To not do so only sets up the naive to be hoodwinked again.

Delaying KXL does not halt the annihilation of the Athabaskan peoples, whose territory is a carcinogenic wasteland. It merely means the Tar Sands toxic bitumen will make its way to the Gulf of Mexico by other routes, which incidentally are already operating, making KXL redundant for now–the real reason for the celebrated KXL ‘rejection’.

The suspension of KXL coincides with a glut of oil reaching the Gulf, necessitating development of greater storage and terminal capacity there. That, and plans to develop pipeline and oil train terminal infrastructure on the West Coast of Canada and the Northwest US, is why KXL rejection no longer matters to oil exporters, but made Warren Buffett, Bill Gates, and their Tar Sands pals a bundle.

The reason for the glut goes back to 2012, when Obama opened up millions of acres for gas and oil in 23 states, ushering in the fracking boom that brought us chemical injection aquifer contamination and ‘bomb trains’ owned by Obama’s friend Warren Buffett since 2009, when he purchased Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad (BNSF) for $34 billion–the same year Tides Foundation funded 350. In 2010, 350 launched the campaign to reject KXL; by 2014, crude-via-rail in the US soared to 500 thousand car loads per year, up from 5 thousand in 2008, with trains exploding across Canada and the US.

As noted in Railroading Racism, BNSF is embroiled in conflict with the Affiliated Tribes of Northwest Indians, that opposes Buffett’s bomb trains and associated oil train terminals in Washington state. BNSF has responded by helping fund Tea Party-led political action committees deeply involved in promoting anti-Indian white supremacy.

To refresh readers’ memories, the KXL ‘grassroots’ hoax was funded in large part by Buffett, through his pet NGO, 350. Funds laundered through Buffett’s foundation NOVO and the Tides Foundation — a money laundry used by Tar Sands investors and other elites to control NGOs — helped finance the KXL NGO charade, thus eclipsing any discussion about shutting down the Tar Sands, and making possible the explosive growth of bomb trains and other pipelines.

As noted at Wrong Kind of Green, There Was Nothing Key About Keystone XL — Except Diverting Our Attention For More Dirty Profit. As noted at The Real News Network, Regardless of Keystone XL, Tar Sands Oil Will Still Flow to the Gulf.

The fact it took two years for TRNN to catch up with WKOG, where the 350/Warren Buffett KXL charade was first exposed, suggests it is as much a cynical opportunist as Hillary. In fact, Skirting the Real News is something I wrote about a year ago, when TRNN was unquestioningly promoting Klein, 350, and their many hoaxes.

Interestingly, the TRNN cover-up of the Klein/Buffett charade remains unexposed by this so-called Real News Network. As I observed in April, Distorting Reality is what liberal gatekeepers like TRNN do. That’s why two-thirds of its ongoing operating revenue comes from the rich, i.e. Ford Foundation. Ford, Rockefeller, and Buffett own the entire ‘grassroots’ KXL NGO milieu.

 

[Jay Taber is an associate scholar of the Center for World Indigenous Studies, a correspondent to Forum for Global Exchange, and a contributing editor of Fourth World Journal. Since 1994, he has served as the administrative director of Public Good Project, a volunteer network of researchers, analysts and activists engaged in defending democracy. As a consultant, he has assisted indigenous peoples seeking justice in such bodies as the European Court of Human Rights and the United Nations.]

Oil Lobbyist: We Built the Equivalent of 10 Keystones Since 2010 and “No One’s Complained”

Earth First! Newswire

November 8, 2015

by Steve Horn

images

Here’s why the oil industry is not so concerned about the defeat of KXL.

Today President Barack Obama announced his decision, alongside Secretary of State John Kerry and the U.S. State Department, to nix the northern leg of TransCanada’s Keystone XL tar sands pipeline.

The announcement was the culmination of a years-long nationwide grassroots and environmental group fight against the pipeline project which was set to carry hundreds of thousands of barrels of Alberta’s carbon-intensive crude across several heartland states and into Cushing, Oklahoma.

While the Obama White House Keystone XL decision has been celebrated by most environmentalists and criticized by Big Oil and its front groups, the truth is much more complex and indeed, dirty.

That’s because for years behind the scenes – as most media attention and activist energy has gone into fighting Keystone XL North – the Obama Administration has quietly been approving hundreds of miles-long pieces of pipeline owned by industry goliath Enbridge and other companies.

“Keystone XL Clone”

I’ve called one of these patchwork networks of pipelines the “Keystone XL Clone” in my reporting.

That pipeline system does the very same thing the rest of TransCanada’s Keystone Pipeline System at-large also already does, even without the Keystone XL North piece in place. That is, it brings Alberta’s tar sands oil across the heartland of the U.S. and down to the U.S. Gulf coast.

Enbridge’s system is the combination of the following pipelines: Line 3, Line 67/Alberta Clipper, Line 61, Flanagan South and the Seaway Twin.

This probably explains why Enbridge was so confident that it announced it would be spending $5 billion to build holding facilities down in the Gulf just two days before the White House’s Keystone XL decision.

“Enbridge’s Gulf Coast plan calls for three terminals stretching from Houston toward New Orleans at St. James Parish,” explained The Wall Street Journal. “Each could have crude storage tanks, ship docks, pipelines and other infrastructure to allow for both the import and export of U.S. and Canadian crude as well as processed condensate and refined products.”

TransCanada, for what it’s worth, also will have a new tar sands pipeline in place soon too that’s been lost in the celebratory shuffle. As the company announced in its investor call this week, the Houston Lateral pipeline that connects to the southern leg of Keystone XL will open for business during the second quarter of 2016.

“Today’s victory comes at a huge cost. Here in Texas and Oklahoma, we lost on KXL,” activist group Tar Sands Blockade stated over Facebook. “For almost two years now KXL has been pumping roughly 400,000 barrels per day of tar sands direct from Alberta to the Gulf Coast, bringing toxic emissions and daily insecurity to countless families across our region. Today is not a step forward, its more like slowing the rate of moving backwards.”

WKOG Op-Ed | Keystone XL: The Specter of Truth

WKOG Op-Ed

November 8, 2015

by Forrest Palmer and Cory Morningstar

 

truth-is-on-the-side-of-the-oppressed-6

In 1865, the Civil War ended. The narrative at that time was that the Civil War was fought and won by the North for the preservation of the Union. Revisionist historians the past few decades have concluded that in hindsight, it wasn’t about preservation of the Union, but the destruction of slavery in a false account that it was done to somehow save the Africans who were being used as free labor during that period. With all that being said, any impartial opinion that takes into account the past history and present circumstances of the post-Civil War period must come to the conclusion that the Civil War was fought to end slavery, but not to save the victims of that scourge of humanity. It was fought to shift the power base of the country to the banking and manufacturing North instead of residing in the agrarian, staple crop South. This is shown in the fact that all the slaves in the South were worth more monetarily than everything else in the country, be it the land, textile industries, buildings, et. al. This in and of itself meant that economic power resided in the South. This was problematic for the North in regards to which region held sway over the other economically, the ONLY thing of importance in a capitalist system.

In regards to the victims belief in this revisionist history, this cultural lie has framed the modern day mindset of black people into thinking that their freedom was ultimately attained due to some benevolent factors in the North (regionally) and federal government (institutionally). Most believe that these were not only the primary reasons, but the only reasons. Systemically, this is indoctrinated into young black minds at the school level through Western education, whereby most black people have been trained to reflexively think that the Civil War was fought to specifically set them free for moral reasons. And since the end of the Civil War, black people in Amerikkka have looked at all the efforts of the civil rights movement as the SOLE answer as to why they have been able to gain some social successes in the country. Hence, the misguided belief is that black Amerikkkans will only get results by way of how much pressure is put on the powers that be through marching, protesting, voting and the like.

Now, the delusion of black people when it comes to the causes of why they have achieved societal gains resides in the faith that it was just their personal organizational efforts, protests and white beneficence. This isn’t the case since there were many SUPERSEDING things that allowed the black community to make gains, such as the fear by the state that black people would collectively become anti-capitalist and align with socialist and communist structures both internal and external to the United States and the need of the country’s leaders to portray the U.S. as a world leader on human rights to both its enemies during the Cold War and its allies in the Western world. (It doesn’t look good when the leaders of the “free world” are at a conference and on the front page of an international newspaper, there are a bunch of white Amerikkkans standing around a hanging black body that has been burned to a crisp with his genitalia cutoff). But, when you look at the levels of poverty, incarceration, discrimination and everyday vagaries of survival in Amerikkka presently, the improvements made by black people have been miniscule at best in most areas and have reverted back to how they were during previous decades in many instances.

This topic of conversation is germane to the Keystone XL issue in that this type of delusion as to the exact causes of its rejection by Barry will disallow the environmental movement from dealing with the present circumstances of its ultimate INSIGNIFICANCE and the future obstacles that will have to be broached in order to reach the ultimate goal (whatever that is, since the ultimate goal in the Western environmental movement has never been detailed to any great degree since it ranges from a faux “green” capitalist economy to the total dismantling of industrial civilization, which leaves a lot of room in between). This current myopia is entirely reminiscent of the delusion present in the Amerikkkan black community in regards to the walk towards an ersatz freedom all these countless years. In terms of the environmental movement, it is this lack of concrete ideals amongst the protesters that has allowed disparate personalities and causes to claim “victory” for Barry (Obama) rejecting the permit for TransCanada. As people have touted this rejection as showing that these people with diverse interests have been able to come together and accomplish a common good, all it will take is many of the people whose self interests are no longer being affected to turn against those who see this as a global issue when their self interest are no longer involved. Hence, many allies today will quickly turn into enemies tomorrow once those who understand the gravity of our situation step out of the bounds administered by those who don’t question the system, but only momentarily take issue with its effect and control in terms of their personal self-interests. Truthfully, it will be the ones who are today judging this in its most stark and honest terms who will be the ones that will stand in solidarity with the same people who are today congregating with those who will one day be their enemies in the mainstream environmental movement. Regarding the most servile response by the people in the mainstream, the fact that people are in celebration because of one measly pipeline when Barry himself said that he and his administration “added enough new oil and gas pipeline to encircle the Earth and then some”, is beyond astounding.

In looking at all these various issues, if the people at the grassroots level are not willing to be honest about the truth, such as the other outside factors that have had MORE INFLUENCE on whatever freedoms black people have today and, in comparison, the facts as to why this one pipeline was rejected that don’t reside in mass mobilization at the grassroots level, then how can people actually affect change? The removal of the obstacles will never be achieved unless the masses are at least willing to be honest. In relation to the Amerikkkan civil rights movement, this mindset has been the major impediment to black people making measurable gains in this country. As black people have become more patriotic and less of a threat to ally themselves with any internal and external groups who don’t want to continue “business as usual”, it is no mistake that things such as mass black unemployment and incarceration levels have exploded in the Amerikkkan black community. And although this is anathema to most black people in Amerikkka, the inability to accept these truths as fact is probably the greatest impediment to actually making strides towards liberation, physical and, even more importantly, mental in nature. This comparable anathema is wholly present in the response by the mainstream environmental movement to anyone who questions the importance of the Keystone XL project’s rejection.

In terms of ongoing pipeline proliferation, if there was a carefully orchestrated plan to shut down ALL pipelines and go to a ZERO CARBON emissions lifestyle and this was the beginning of this long and arduous task, akin to laying the first spike down in the transcontinental railroad, then there would be reason to celebrate. However, other than momentarily affecting the balance sheet of a handful of multinational corporations with the Keystone XL rejection, this has been and will be an irrelevant non-starter to dealing with the literally suffocating problem of carbon emissions and capitalism’s reliance upon said emissions. But, as Barry’s act is being portrayed as being due to the efforts of those at the grassroots level, all evidence points to this being anything but the case. The grassroots just benefited from the actions of Barry (to only a very miniscule, microscopic degree, I might add). In summary, the raw truth is that Barry’s actions weren’t a byproduct of pressure, but of political expediency.

Honestly though, the same people who will look at this commentary as sacrilege in telling the truth about the Civil War or the lack of primacy when it came to the civil rights movement in establishing inroads to white supremacy are the same ones who will take the truth tellers to task for being honest about Keystone XL on this day. But as you look at the plight of black people in Amerikkka today, who are existing in as miserable conditions as they did at any given time during the post Civil War era, the attempt to live a lie has a had a deleterious effect on society as a whole, which is a harbinger of the outcome of this ultimately insignificant action by Barry and how it is being promoted by the mainstream environmental movement.

In that same vein, to act like this is a victory of some sort gives the impression to the masses that the fight is won while there is not a shred of credible evidence to prove this as being a fact. In all the congratulatory talk about the pipeline, there is no discussion of how this will have no real effect as to the present carbon emissions issue where it will only slow down our runaway environmental issue globally to a small degree, at best. The reason this discussion isn’t present is that this would be seen for exactly what it is: a hollow victory.

And to compare an individual in the civil rights movement to those who are willing to tell the truth about this current event regarding the environment, after the hallowed Martin Luther King Jr. turned from just talking about civil rights for black people and delved into capitalism, Western militarism and poverty during the last couple of years of his life, he became a pariah to those on the right and left, white AND BLACK. But once again, revisionist history will not tell you this since it is much more palatable to pawn King to the masses as someone who was beloved throughout his life in the guise of obsequious obedience to the social order illustrated in his adherence to non-violent principles. In the hands of the power structure, this is used as a euphemism to inculcate people into allowing themselves to be walked over and feel bad about responding “by any means necessary” as a justifiable reaction by any unprejudiced measure, to use a phrase coined by the great Malcolm X.

So, as that is the case, all of the people berating the ones who are shining a light on how this Keystone XL decision is not a victory in any way, shape or form are in direct alignment ideologically with the ones who castigated King during his last years on this Earth because he was willing to speak the truth no matter how uncomfortable it made the people who he was ultimately trying to help. Since that is the case, I think it is time to ask the same people today whose side they are truly on. Because if people aren’t willing to disprove the statements by the individuals who are critiquing this in as honest way as possible, then the responders are being disingenuous at best and are enemies posing as allies at worst. I think we are learning that many are the latter and not the former.

Ultimately, the single pipeline that was stopped MOMENTARILY by stroke of Barry’s pen is akin to a single slave running away from a plantation in the Deep South. And although we like to culturally aggrandize the singular stories of certain slaves that were able to escape from Amerikkkan slavery, like Harriet Tubman and Frederick Douglass, the TRUTH is that less than 1% of slaves were able to make the arduous journey from enslavement to freedom during the legal slavery on these shores. Hence, the past celebration and present commemoration of singular successful slave attempts at freedom while millions of other lived in the worst conditions possible is beyond dishonest. In the same way, to celebrate this individual event of Keystone XL is beyond shortsighted. It is time to stop celebrating the individual battles when we are losing the war by any unbiased opinion. And for those who are concerned with the truth, it is time to start talking about winning the war and not be satisfied with useless, facile individual battles and their interpretative victories.

Summarily, if you can’t talk honestly about the problem, then how can you ever come up with a solution?

 

 

Truth between the Lines: The “BREAKING: Keystone XL pipeline rejected!” announcement circulated by 350.org

Wrong Kind of Green

November 8, 2015

 

Wrong Kind of Green responses follow 350.org remarks in bold red text. Emphasis have been left as in the original 350.org text.

 

From: Bill McKibben and 350.org’s Keystone XL Team <350@350.org>
Date: Fri, Nov 6, 2015 at 11:17 AM
Subject: BREAKING: Keystone XL pipeline rejected!
Friends,

We just made history together. 4 years to the day after we surrounded the White House, President Obama has rejected the Presidential Permit for the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline! WKOG: Framing: This introduction implies symbolic state sanctioned protests are effective in the war against genocide.

This is huge. WKOG: This has had no impact on the production of crude oil which continues to break records.

A head of state has never rejected a major fossil fuel project because of its climate impacts before. WKOG: The fossil fuel project was not rejected for its climate impacts. This is simply political posturing as the pipeline is not needed. The sections of the Keystone XL pipeline that were needed were built and put into operation long ago (June 2010, February 2011). Alternate pipelines have been approved with little to no dissent from the non-profit industrial complex. The President’s decision sets the standard for what climate action looks like: standing up to the fossil fuel industry, and keeping fossil fuels in the ground. WKOG: The fossil fuel industry is alive and well (as there remains zero focus on consumption), the fossil fuels are not being kept in the ground. They continue to be produced and brought to the market by rail and alternate pipelines.

“Now, under my administration, America is producing more oil today than at any time in the last eight years.  (Applause.)  That’s important to know.  Over the last three years, I’ve directed my administration to open up millions of acres for gas and oil exploration across 23 different states.  We’re opening up more than 75 percent of our potential oil resources offshore.  We’ve quadrupled the number of operating rigs to a record high.  We’ve added enough new oil and gas pipeline to encircle the Earth and then some..” — US President Barack Obama, March 22, 2012 [Source]

Make no mistake: this victory belongs to us, the movement. President Obama’s courage today is a reflection of the courage shown by thousands of people who have sat in, marched, organized, (and opened a lot of emails) across North America against this pipeline. WKOG: Framing Obama as courageous is disingenuous (or delusional) at best. Those who deserve credit, gratitude and respect (those on the front lines) continue to be impacted by pollution, toxins, prostitution, drugs and the many negative aspects of oil booms and industry. This fight started with First Nations in Canada where the tar sands are extracted, and spread to farmers, ranchers and tribal nations along the pipeline route. Since then people from all walks of life have joined hands against Keystone, and the 830,000 barrels per day of destructive tar sands oil it would have carried through the country to be burned. WKOG: The victory does not belong to 350 et al., an arm of the elites by whom they are financed. Rather, the non-profit industrial complex co-opts the legitimate fight of those on the front lines only in to project faux credibility and faux legitimacy. The timing is both strategic and critical as this faux credibility is needed by 350 et al. as they take our hand and lead us to the future of assigning value to nature (payments for ecosystem services or PES) under the guise of climate solutions and a “new economy” as we approach COP21, Paris. Further, the “830,000 barrels per day of destructive tar sands oil it would have carried through the country to be burned” are being transported via rail having resulted in the deaths of 47 people in Lac Megantic, Quebec, Canada and two deaths in a separate crude via rail derailment (who join those on the front lines as the invisible). Crude via rail derailments, which have been staggering in number, has also caused untold destruction to our already deteriorating ecosystems.

Together, we have shown what it takes to win: a determined, principled, unrelenting grassroots movement that takes to the streets whenever necessary, and isn’t afraid to put our bodies on the line. WKOG: 350, a multi-million dollar international NGO is not a grassroots movement. This is yet another prime example of co-optation. Only those on the front lines have ever put their “bodies on the line”. The “win”, the “victory” belongs to industry whose rape and pillage continues uninterrupted with a public thinking they have “won”. To believe we have “won” without tackling consumption of fossil fuels and the western lifestyle (which is a detriment to the world), is a win for those who finance the non-profit industrial complex and depend on both expansion of capital and perpetual growth.

Politicians in Washington DC didn’t make this happen. Our movement did. We want to thank everyone who has been a part of this campaign — from calling Congress to getting arrested on the White House fence. WKOG: This move was strategic by both state and industry. It was not the state bending or bowing to the will of the people. This does not mean those on the front lines who fought do not deserve credit. They do. Yet reality and truth must be acknowledged if we are to truly win our struggles and ultimately end genocide. State sanctioned arrests are simply PR for organizations such as 350.org.

You can join us in appreciating everyone who made this day possible by co-signing our thank you card to the movement — we’ll deliver personalized versions of the card with your messages to everyone who has led or attended an action against Keystone XL since 2011. Click here to sign the thank you card to the #NoKXL Movement.

Powered by our organizing, the tide is turning against the fossil fuel industry — every major new project they propose is being met by organized opposition on the ground, and politicians are lining up to stand behind our movement and say that we must keep the vast majority of fossil fuels underground. WKOG: Powered by the organizing of the NPIC at the bequest of their funders, society is assisting in the expansion of capital while being led to believe the opposite. This is true in the case of “renewable energies” which are not clean, are carbon based and carbon dependent (to be used by the wealthy 1% creating 50% of global greenhouse gas emissions, which is to say, anyone who can afford to get on a plane). This is also true of the “new economy” now being implemented, whereby we assign monetary value to Earth’s remaining resources and assign corporations as the new “stewards” of our natural environment. To say “politicians are lining up to stand behind our movement and say that we must keep the vast majority of fossil fuels underground” as the United States leads in the destabilizing, illegal invasions and full out annihilation of sovereign states throughout the Middle East, Africa, and the globe, for oil, rare earth minerals and Earth’s natural resources, is nothing more than dangerous propaganda denying (and at the same time highlighting) racism and class.

Resistance is growing because the fossil fuel industry is more reckless than ever: from Texas where the Southern leg of Keystone XL pumps toxic tar sands, to Alberta where Big Oil foolishly plans to expand its mines, to California where they want to frack during a historic drought, to the enormous coal pits of Appalachia and Australia. WKOG: The intent behind marketing the idea that “resistance is growing because the fossil fuel industry is more reckless than ever” is to lead society to a third industrialized revolution, that of “renewable energy” in a world where growth has stagnated and capitalism, dependent on perpetual uninterrupted growth, is in trouble. Both a global transition to “renewable energies” and payments for ecosystem services create potential mass markets for capitalism to continue unabated. Note that 350 never mentioned the key sections of KXL that were built and in operation until it became common knowledge due to the perseverance of grass roots activists and those on the front lines. Also note that crude via rail was rarely if ever mentioned by the NGOS within the non-profit industrial complex (including 350.org) until after the Lac Megantic tragedy. One can safely assume this is due to the 26 million dollars (2003-2011) funneled into the Tides Foundation (which distributes funds to the tar sands campaigns) via the Buffett families NGO NoVo. Also note zero reference to the enormous lithium pits which are imperative to “renewable energy”.

We have more tools than ever to work with. A strong fossil fuel resistance is already taking shape across the globe. Since we began fighting Keystone XL, the movement for divestment from fossil fuels has grown into a global powerhouse able to move tens of billions of dollars and undercut the social license of the fossil fuel industry. Fracking bans have stopped drilling in towns, counties and now whole states across the country. Communities are seizing their energy futures by demanding 100% renewable power in record numbers. WKOG: Fracking bans were won by the hard work of grassroots groups who resisted the co-optation by the NGOS within the NPIC. NGOs serve their funders first and foremost. Recall that 1Sky (which merged with 350 in 2011) was a incubator NGO of Rockefeller Foundation which, with the United Nations Global Compact has launched a new framework to address climate change. The NPIC is assigned and financed to have society acclimatize and acquiesce to the solutions that protect power and capital. Solutions already designed and agreed upon that patiently await implementation by the elites.

And when world leaders meet in Paris later this year, they’ll do so knowing what our movement can do, and what climate action really looks like: keeping fossil fuels in the ground. WKOG: Bolivia, the G77 and other nations on the front lines of climate change demonstrated what “climate action really looks like” back in 2009 at COP15 when they demanded the radical emission targets necessary in order to keep their citizens alive. These positions were grossly undermined and made invisible by the non-profit industrial complex. In 2010 Bolivia’s Indigenous Peoples were again undermined by 350.org at The World People’s Conference on Climate Change hosted by the state of Bolivia. The declaration traduced by this conference was also buried by the non-profit industrial complex. Further, world “leaders” such as Obama, serve capital not people. They respond to force and threats to capital and growth, not passiveness and admiration. “Nobody in the world, nobody in history, has ever gotten their freedom by appealing to the moral sense of the people who were oppressing them.” — Assata Shakur

Today we can approach all of our work with new eyes. We know that we can fight, and we can win.

This isn’t just a victory for the climate movement — it’s a victory for everyone who believes in the power of organized people, from the streets of Missouri, to the border crossings of Arizona, to the hills of South Dakota and Nebraska. WKOG: Note that there is not a single reference in this announcement to the crude via rail 21st century empire built by Barrack Obama’s financial advisor and billionaire Warren Buffett (while all eyes were on the KXL). Note not a single reference to the consumption/lifestyles by those of privilege (350 target audience) as though the oil being produced simply has vanishes into mid air after it is produced and delivered to market. Nor does 350/McKibben address the capitalist economic system that perpetuates the consumption and enslaves us all. Via spectacle, 350 et al perpetuate society’s accelerating decline into a culture incapable of employing the critical thought process so desperately needed at this juncture.

Click. Like. But don’t think. It’s divisive.

Together, we’re on the path to real, substantive change.

With joy, and immense gratitude,

The 350.org Keystone XL pipeline fighting team:

Bill, Cam, Clayton, David, Deirdre, Duncan, Jamie, Jason, Joshua, Linda, Matt, May, Phil, Rae and Sara

 

Keystone XL Charade

Public Good Project

November 7, 2015

by Jay Taber

charade

As noted at Wrong Kind of Green, There Was Nothing Key About Keystone XL — Except Diverting Our Attention For More Dirty Profit. As noted at The Real News Network, Regardless of Keystone XL, Tar Sands Oil Will Still Flow to the Gulf.

Pipelines-thru-US-640x354

The fact it took two years for TRNN to catch up with WKOG, where the 350/Warren Buffett KXL charade was first exposed, suggests it is as much a cynical opportunist as Hillary. In fact, Skirting the Real News is something I wrote about a year ago, when TRNN was unquestioningly promoting Klein, 350, and their many hoaxes.

cbr-loadings---annual-2008---2013

Interestingly, the TRNN cover-up of the Klein/Buffett charade remains unexposed by this so-called Real News Network. As I observed in April, Distorting Reality is what liberal gatekeepers like TRNN do. That’s why two-thirds of its ongoing operating revenue comes from the rich.

 

[Jay Taber is an associate scholar of the Center for World Indigenous Studies, a correspondent to Forum for Global Exchange, and a contributing editor of Fourth World Journal. Since 1994, he has served as communications director at Public Good Project, a volunteer network of researchers, analysts and activists engaged in defending democracy. As a consultant, he has assisted indigenous peoples in the European Court of Human Rights and at the United Nations. Email: tbarj [at] yahoo.com Website: www.jaytaber.com]

There Was Nothing Key about Keystone XL – Except Diverting our Attention for More Dirty Profit

November 7, 2015

 

“The reality is that oil production continues to break record highs. The reality is that the deadly 21st century oil via rail empire – engineered by Warren Buffett (BNSF) has been deadly to dozens of people with horrific environmental consequences to life and ecosystems. The reality is that these victims, along with these facts, fall under the same category as those on the front lines: the invisible. The fact that this so-called “victory” is being cheered symbolizes the greatest lack of critical thinking – an ongoing social engineering project that continues to surpass all expectations of the oligarchs who finance it.” — Cory Morningstar, The Art of Annihilation, November 7, 2015

Reality:

all_pipe

“Now, under my administration, America is producing more oil today than at any time in the last eight years.  (Applause.)  That’s important to know.  Over the last three years, I’ve directed my administration to open up millions of acres for gas and oil exploration across 23 different states.  We’re opening up more than 75 percent of our potential oil resources offshore.  We’ve quadrupled the number of operating rigs to a record high.  We’ve added enough new oil and gas pipeline to encircle the Earth and then some..” — US President Barack Obama, March 22, 2012 [Source]

 

buffet

Gloat like Rockefeller When Watching Trains [ Keystone XL: The Art of NGO Discourse | Part I, April 12, 2013]

“The ONLY thing that kept Barry from approving this thing was for political reasons that had nothing to do with a grassroots movement…a basic public relations move since he had nothing to gain by approving a permit of which TransCanada wouldn’t be able to utilize during his administration – period.” — Forrest Palmer, Wrong Kind of Green

Crude Production is Booming:

September 17, 2014: “U.S. crude oil imports from Canada hit a record high of nearly 3 million barrels per day in the week ended Sept. 12, U.S. Energy Information Administration data showed on Wednesday. The weekly data showed Canada, the top supplier of crude to the United States, exported 2.994 million barrels of crude to its southern neighbour. That was a 20 percent increase on the same period a year earlier. The four-week average to Sept. 12 was 2.932 million bpd. Canada has been able to ship more crude to the United States as production in the Alberta oil sands rises despite tight capacity on export pipelines, due in part to the emergence of crude-by-rail.” [Source]

November 4, 2015: “In September, the U.S. imported 101.3 million barrels of crude oil from Canada, the most this year and the second-highest level in records going back to 2010, according to data from the Census Bureau.” (that’s 3.37 million barrels per day) [Source]

Buffett’s BNSF is Booming

“A whopping 28,000 per cent increase in the amount of oil shipped by rail over the past five years is coming under the microscope following the deadly rail blast in Quebec.” — July 8, 2013 [Source]

NGO-is-born

 

 

 

America has built the equivalent of 10 Keystone pipelines since 2010 — and nobody said anything

Financial Post

November 3, 2015

by Yadullah Hussain

By last year, the U.S. had built 12,000 miles of pipe since 2010.

BloombergBy last year, the U.S. had built 12,000 miles of pipe since 2010.

While TransCanada Corp. has been cooling its heels on its Keystone XL proposal for the past six years, the oil pipeline business has been booming in the United States.

Crude oil pipeline mileage rose 9.1 per cent last year alone to reach 66,649 miles, according to data from the Washington, D.C.-based Association of Oil Pipe Lines (AOPL)  set to be released soon.

Between 2009 and 2013, more than 8,000 miles of oil transmission pipelines have been built in the past five years in the U.S., AOPL spokesperson John Stoody said, compared to the 875 miles TransCanada wants to lay in the states of Montana, South Dakota and Nebraska for its 830,000-bpd project. By last year, the U.S. had built 12,000 miles of pipe since 2010.

“That’s the point we make,” Stoody said. “While people have been debating Keystone in the U.S. we have actually built the equivalent of 10 Keystones. And no one’s complained or said anything.”

On Monday, TransCanada asked the U.S. State Department to suspend review of its controversial Alberta-to-Nebraska pipeline in the latest episode of a six-year drama that has seen as many as five environmental reviews, numerous legal challenges and a rejection in 2012 by President Barack Obama.

Despite TransCanada’s request for a pause, the U.S. President still rejected the project. He announced on Friday that he would not approve the Keystone application, saying the project did not serve the nation’s interests.

The 487-mile southern leg of the project, dubbed the Gulf Coast project, between Cushing, Okla. and Texas refineries came on stream in 2014.

While the northern leg of Keystone XL remains under review, the Lower 48s have seen new oil pipes crisscrossing the country.

“If you look at 2010 versus now we have seen historic realignment that has transformed the infrastructure situation,” said Afolabi Ogunnaike, analyst at Wood Mackenzie. “There has been tremendous investment in pipelines and more investments are coming on.”

The U.S. midstream infrastructure is responding to a near-doubling of U.S. production over the past six years. The U.S. saw an 11.6 per cent increase in crude oil transport via pipelines in 2014, according to AOPL data.

FP1104-Keystone_pipeline_web

But as U.S. oil production eases in response to lower crude prices, the rapid build-up could see pipeline capacity exceed production in the Bakken in North Dakota and even the Permian basin straddling Texas and New Mexico, Ogunnaike estimates.

“The low oil price environment is allowing the crude oil logistics to catch up to supply,” he said.

Armed with shipping commitments despite low crude prices, key pipeline operators are proceeding with many projects to alleviate the bottlenecks, which could add as much as 8.7 million barrels per day by 2018, Reuters data shows.

Last week, Houston-based pipeline company Enterprise Product Partners said it would have US$7.8 billion of major capital projects ready by the end of 2017. Tulsa, Okla.-based shipper Magellan Midstream Partners raised its capital expenditure by US$200 million to US$1.6 billion in its earnings announcement Tuesday. TransCanada has reported higher volumes on the Keystone Pipeline System in its third-quarter earnings, while Enbridge Inc. is also looking to expand its presence in the Gulf Coast.

Much of the opposition in the U.S. has focused on crude rail terminals, especially in California and Oregon, which has led to delays on some rail projects. In many states, pipeline is viewed more favourably than the sight of crude-bearing rail cars barreling down town centres.

“There is some local opposition, but we don’t have local or inter-state projects that are attracting the same level of scrutiny as Keystone XL seems to have. Keystone XL is an international issue,” Ogunnaike says.

But for many the fight against Keystone XL pipeline remains a high priority in a larger battle to combat climate change.

“I have always opposed Keystone XL,” tweeted Democrat presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders on Monday. “It isn’t a distraction — it’s a fundamental litmus test of your commitment to battle climate change.”

But the opposition has done little to stop the surge of Alberta crude flowing through the U.S. pipeline systems: Canadian crude oil exports to the U.S. soared to 3.4 million barrels per day in August – a new record.