Reviewing the Keystone XL Pipeline: Part 7
It has come down to job creation vs. environmental safety. Both sides are vigorously promoting their views this week in Washington and the Democratic party thus is torn between two of its largest issues. An environmentalist group has decided to take the issue to court, citing a violation of the National Environmental Policy Act when American burying beetles were allegedly relocated and native grasses destroyed to make way for the pipeline. This disruption of the natural landscape can spell potential disaster for our ecosystem and lawmakers need to weigh the consequences of this project before moving ahead. If something goes wrong, it could affect the aquifer and the surrounding ecosystem, which includes humans. Politically, lawmakers also need to address the potential jobs being created by the pipeline because of the power of the labor unions. The United Association is testifying in the case to push for the approval of what they consider to be an environmentally safe project that will create over 342,000 jobs. There have been wildly different estimates of how many jobs this project will create, possibly skewed by both parties in either direction. Regardless, lawmakers and Obama must choose which issue, job creation or environmentalism, will take precedence. Sadly, it will probably be job creation in this tough economy.
The two sources this week were an article from the Courthouse News Service (based in Pasadena, CA) and the UA Local Union 798 via the Sacramento Bee. The Courthouse News Service article was merely a reiteration of the legal issues surrounding the environmental impact of the pipeline, barely any bias, seemingly. It was factual and relatively in-depth, as it is a brief for lawmakers in this area. However the article written by the UA Local Union 798 was probably very biased, as the group wrote about its own cause and self-promoted their agenda. It had many valid points, but all of them must be taken with a grain of salt because it was not written by a 3rd party.