A Canadian company's fight to build the proposed Keystone XL pipeline is taking a decidedly personal turn. TransCanada is suing dozens of landowners for access to their properties in order to build the pipeline. But many of the property owners say they're not going down without a fight.
According to the New York Times, TransCanada -- acting through its U.S. subsidiary, Keystone -- has been ordering people to hand over their land, claiming eminent domain. Yet the company doesn't actually have the green light from the U.S. government to start construction. Regardless, TransCanada officials say they're still able to start securing land, which is exactly what they're doing to the chagrin of property owners along the pipeline's proposed 1,700-mile path. A final decision from the State Department is expected by the end of the year; but a report claiming the project would have "minimal environmental impact" strongly suggests the State Department will give Keystone XL the go-ahead.
The pipeline would cross through six states on its way from northern Canada to the U.S. Gulf Coast, carrying crude oil to refineries. Supporters say it would be a boon for job seekers, and a source of security for those worried about foreign energy dependence. But opponents -- including us here at The Overbrook Foundation -- are concerned about the environmental repercussions of Keystone XL. The pipeline runs the risk of contaminating the Ogallala Aquifer, the source of water for more than a quarter of the nation's crops. Critics are also worried about the devastating effects of extracting and burning heavy crude in Canada's oil sands.
To read the full article on the New York Times' website, click here.