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Keystone XL fails President Obama's climate test

The president made a promise to young people when he vowed to reject Keystone if it would harm the climate, telling them, "I refuse to condemn your generation and future generations to a planet that's beyond fixing."
The president made a promise to young people when he vowed to reject Keystone if it would harm the climate, telling them, "I refuse to condemn your generation and future generations to a planet that's beyond fixing."
Sierra Club

President Obama has all the information he needs, and on Friday January 31, Keystone XL failed his climate test. The State Department just released its final environmental impact report on the project - and despite the spin from the oil industry, it shows that the voices of activists have made a difference. “Don't believe the media hype: Keystone XL can be defeated once and for all," says Michael Brune of Sierra Club.

President Obama vowed to reject the pipeline if the project would "significantly exacerbate the problem of carbon pollution." The verdict is in: Keystone XL fails President Obama's climate test. Evidence from the scientific community, industry analysts, and the EPA had already shown that Keystone XL would increase carbon pollution from the tar sands, and on Friday the State Department backed away from its previous claim that the pipeline wouldn't have a significant impact.

The State Department report was Big Oil's last hope for cheating on President Obama's climate test. A flawed and biased draft report - written by a dues-paying member of the American Petroleum Institute - claimed that Keystone XL wouldn't have a significant environmental impact.

The facts, however, told a different story. Everyone from oil industry financial analysts to the EPA confirmed that Keystone XL would spur massive tar sands expansion in Alberta, which would lead to a significant increase in carbon pollution. While the State Department's review has significant problems, it now acknowledges that Keystone XL will have the carbon pollution equivalent to adding up to 5.7 million cars to the roads.

The president made a promise to young people when he vowed to reject Keystone if it would harm the climate, telling them, "I refuse to condemn your generation and future generations to a planet that's beyond fixing."

Now is President Obama's opportunity to show he means it, that his actions match his words, and that he'll keep his promises to future generations. The only way he can do this is by listening to the facts and rejecting Keystone XL.

TAKE ACTION: “Big Oil won't take this defeat lying down, so we can't stop now. We need to flood the White House with emails telling President Obama to keep his pledge and reject Keystone XL,” says Brune.

(Amanda Carlucci has her finger on the pulse of the green movement. Stay up to date on the latest in green activism. You CAN make a difference. Be a part of the movement, and click here to subscribe. It's anonymous and free!)