By Sarah Marshall:
The approval of the Keystone XL pipeline from Alberta Canada down to the Gulf of Mexico in Texas has been a controversial topic in the United States. Tar sands oil is the dirtiest form and therefore has to go through an intensive refinement process.
Many environmentalists have stated that tapping into that oil source (a last resort) is a “carbon time bomb.”
Even without approval of the pipeline, the groundwork has been laid, and the oil has been transported via trains.
In fact, there is already a pipeline from Illinois to Texas that has been in place for 65 years, in operation through Exxon Mobil, and that ruptured in Arkansas last Friday, necessitating an evacuation of 22 homes.
The oil giant has agreed to “cooperate” in the investigation by retaining paperwork relating to the spill, although they are apparently exempted from paying into the federal Oil Spill Liability Trust Fund because the oil is so dirty, it is not technically considered “oil.”
This appalling lack of accountability exposes America’s addiction to oil at any and all costs!
GM and many other American car companies reported an increase in SUV and truck sales for the month of March, many with records not seen since the “Great Recession” began. Apparently, every last drop of oil must be extracted from the ground before a transition is made to a cleaner energy economy and lifestyle.
Until the “bigger is better” mentality in America is broken, the flaws in the system will only be exacerbated, and oil sales will skyrocket, with few alternatives to choose from, all of which are pricey.
Looking at long-term investments and planning for a future without oil, a FINITE resource, is only practical.
Holding energy companies accountable for their actions is essential in keeping them from monopolizing the industry and getting away with murder in terms of landscape destruction and infringing on the rights of locals.
The media’s lack of attention to the spill does not help either.
We cannot expect someone else to do the job of holding institutions accountable; the people have an obligation to do so, or else their complacency will open the door for more rights to be stripped away right under their very noses.