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On Fifth Anniversary, Keystone XL a Proxy for America's Energy Choices

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted September 16, 2013

Debate Revs as Decision Stalls Over Oil Pipeline From Canada

NPR: Five years ago this week, a Canadian company proposed building a pipeline to send heavy crude oil from Alberta to U.S. refineries. Although the Obama administration's answer on the Keystone XL pipeline is not expected anytime soon, politicians in Washington and Canada are ramping up the pressure for the project, while environmentalists are pushing hard against it.

The intense focus on the decision reflects the fact that the Keystone XL pipeline has become a proxy for the larger debate on climate change emissions. The heavy crude the pipeline would carry has a substantially bigger greenhouse gas footprint than conventional crude.

This summer, President Obama said he wouldn't approve the Keystone XL if he determined that it would exacerbate climate change.


Still, many politicians in the U.S. and Canada tout Keystone as a job creator and crucial tool for making North America energy independent.

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Mark Green joined API after a career in newspaper journalism, including 16 years as national editorial writer for The Oklahoman in the paper’s Washington bureau. Mark also was a reporter, copy editor and sports editor. He earned his journalism degree from the University of Oklahoma and master’s in journalism and public affairs from American University. He and his wife Pamela live in Occoquan, Va., where they enjoy their four grandchildren.