I recently wrote Sen. Bob Casey and asked him not to support the Keystone XL pipeline. Unfortunately, he voted “yes” for the pipeline. The likely long-term environmental effects of the pipeline far outweigh the short-term economic effects. These economic effects will likely primarily benefit the oil and gas industry. In the meantime, the real risk of damage to our breadbasket in the Dakotas and other states is unconscionable. We may not be able to feed ourselves. This will, of course, impair our “booming” agricultural export market. What are we trading for a fistful of dollars for the oil and gas industry?
We should be looking for ways to mitigate climate change and not ways to justify appeasing the oil and gas industry. If our elected legislators won’t do it, we will have to mitigate climate change in our own backyards. Mitigation strategies include: heightened energy efficiency in the fossil fuels we now use; adoption of solar, wind, and geothermal energy technologies; and sourcing and use of locally produced foods to cut fossil fuel transportation costs.
Mary Carol Frier