Tuesday, February 3, 2015

EPA urges State Department to revisit KXL's climate impact; pallid sturgeon suit filed

In a likely lethal blow to the proposed Keystone XL pipeline the US Environmental Protection Agency is urging the State Department to rethink the costs to the climate. The oil patch is seeing some panic as prices fall.
The State Department, which is evaluating the project because the TransCanada Corp pipeline would carry oil from a foreign country, is expected to make a recommendation to Obama soon, after reviewing comments from the EPA and other federal agencies. The EPA also said the State Department's final review showed that until efforts to cut emissions from oil sands production are more widespread, development of the resource "represents a significant increase in greenhouse gas emissions." [Reuters]
Few have doubted that the foreign enterprise proposed to ship diluted bitumen mined on lands leased by the Koch Brothers then shipped to refineries half a continent away would ever leave the drawing board.

Water crossings where ice floes bash moorings and flooding causes scouring of fill from river bottoms are particularly vulnerable to failures.

In other environment news litigation is pending in efforts to the save the endangered pallid sturgeon on an endangered Missouri River.
On Monday, the Defenders of Wildlife and the Natural Resources Defense Council sued the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the Bureau of Reclamation and the Fish and Wildlife Service in a Great Falls federal district court for operating dams on the Yellowstone and Missouri rivers in such a way that endangers the pallid sturgeon. “The current proposal from the Army Corps is essentially an eviction notice for the pallid sturgeon that has called this river home for millions of years — but it doesn’t have to be. We need the federal government to refocus and return to a solution that will give the sturgeon a fighting chance to not only survive, but thrive. Doing so would be a win-win for all,” said Marcus Griswold, water resources scientist with the Natural Resources Defense Council. [Laura Lundquist, Bozeman Daily Chronicle]




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