Skip to comments.Yedlin: Pipeline decision signals U.S. not open for business
Posted on 11/14/2011 7:44:33 AM PST by thackney
So much for the U.S. being the bastion of free enterprise and respecting due process.
With the State Department announcing Thursday it wants to explore alternative routing for TransCanada's Keystone XL pipeline, after the project has been subject to 36 months of review - dutifully following a prescribed process that resulted in thousands of pages of documentation - the U.S. has signalled to the world it is not open for business.
Businesses need certainty and transparency to make investment decisions; that has been destroyed with one news release.
Read between the lines and things get even more interesting.
This announcement was directed from the White House, but the State Department is "wearing it."
Thus, if there was any doubt, it's clear this was politically motivated, predicated on the upcoming U.S. presidential election, the need to keep deep-pocketed Democratic donors happy while not alienating either supporters of the Keystone project or those who oppose it. How else can one explain what is effectively a change in the rules that will delay approval of the project until the first quarter of 2013 - conveniently after the presidential election.
This decision has been taken without due regard to the consequences of what happens to business investment when the rules are changed on the fly: Obama should ask former Alberta Premier Ed Stelmach about that one.
With this move, the geopolitical risk often ascribed to investing in countries where the rules have been known to change unexpectedly - say, Russia, Libya or Venezuela - is now going to be used when describing the business climate in the U.S.
Canada and the U.S. have a very important trading relationship; this decision has inextricably injected an element of mistrust into that relationship which won't be easily repaired.
That a publicly traded Canadian company, with transparent governance and processes based in a free and democratic society can be subject to this kind of treatment does not bode well for companies from other countries seeking to invest in the U.S.
The U.S. companies with operations in Canada, especially those operating in the oilsands, should be feeling mighty betrayed that their own government doesn't appear to understand the economics behind the need for this kind of continental energy infrastructure.
Being able to get oil into Gulf Coast refineries, which have already spent money re-tooling their facilities to accept the heavier barrels, would eliminate the WTI-Brent differential that has been sitting between the $15 and $20 US per barrel. Receiving WTI pricing for those barrels means companies that are not integrated on the refining side have been leaving millions of dollars on the table every day.
The same holds true for companies producing light oil from the Bakken formation in North Dakota. The Keystone pipeline was going to get those barrels to the Gulf Coast, resulting in more revenues for companies, not to mention needy government coffers.
The statement issued by the State Department said this latest review would, examine environmental concerns, including climate change.
Setting aside for a minute that all these issues were likely addressed in sufficient detail throughout the last 36 months, one wonders what could possibly surface that would be new and relevant in the coming 15 months or so?
The energy security and economic impact issues undoubtedly were examined in full - and remain irrefutable. The project would result in thousands of shovel-ready jobs and plenty of coin for government coffers.
The fact the U.S. wants to go down the environmental road - including looking at climate change - in the upcoming round smacks of nothing other than sheer hypocrisy.
The U.S. is further away from any sort of climate change initiatives than Canada - and if it really wanted to address the climate change issue it would follow Canada's lead and start phasing out coal-fired power generation.
In other words, to suggest the review of the last 36 months and the approvals received are insufficient is tough to buy into.
Ultimately, this is politics of a different sort and the unfortunate piece is it's not just TransCanada caught in the middle - it's the thousands of people that could have been immediately employed, not to mention those who will be affected by companies who will choose a country other than the U.S. as a place to invest.
Prime Minister Steven Harper will be seeing Obama in Hawaii today. No doubt he will be looking at someone who was supposed to be a trusted neighbour in a different light and wondering whether Chinese President Hu Jintao might be a more reliable ally.
“..The statement issued by the State Department said this latest review would, examine environmental concerns, including climate change...”
What a crock. Obama pandering to the green vote and money laundering machine. Nothing new here....move along!
For the Democrats, high-paying jobs and lower gas prices aren’t as important as those environmental group campaign donations and votes.
“Alternative routing”? If you can’t figure it out in 36 months, you’ll never figure it out. It all boils down to the fact that some feel we need to continue to pay the middle east for our oil. The other fact is the willful distruction of our country and the lack of will of our politicians to put a stop to it.
with comrade obama at the helm, whaddaya expect?
how to get the lower class folks who don’t pay attention to politics
to see that the democrat party increases their costs
while enslaving them to lower wages?
And we won’t be open for business until we tar and feather the libtard marshmallows currently infesting the top levels of our government.
Again, I humbly offer my services to operate the guillotine.
I promise to do my duties with decency - and with a big, big smile.
On all these threads I always note that I have the two leading Republican office holders in this state (Nebraska) opposing this pipeline. REPUBLICANS.
Translated, in the past 36 months of review, we haven't found a reason to deny it yet. We will keep looking.
Face it. The inmates are running this asylum.
Good news! They found a route that was acceptable.
From here it goes by tanker to Asia.
bump for later.
If Canada finally gets pissed off and says to the U.S., “Forget it, we’re going with another plan”, and we lose the thousands of jobs this would create...... Katy bar the door if Obama dares come to my “oil refinery area” of Texas to camapign in 2012. His campaign rally will turn into a melee at best, a riot at worst.
Business has STOPPED in the United States until Jan. 2013...
Which “by the way” was and “IS” the plan...
That is what the Cloward-Piven tactic is supposed to “DO” and does..
Funny.. you don’t hear much of Cloward-Piven anymore since Glen Beck exited stage right..
Its almost like there is “conspiracy” to hide the term from America..
O’Really doesnt mention it, not Hannity.. or Greta.. even Savage and Levin don’t mention it anymore..
Its like the grand plan of leftists (Cloward-Piven) ceased to exist...
Amazing how through has been the “deduction” from common parlance..
Meaning the very PLAN (thats on-going NOW) has been deducted from common thought...
It is amazing that it could have been done. but it was done..
Which leaves only one thought!!!!!...
America is being milked by some very smart dairy farmers...
YOU... Yes.. You!!.... have been reduced to a Milk Cow..
AND.. “YOU” are worried about which Bull will be trotted out for the republican primarys..
WELL.. DUUUUGH!.. “shut up and chew your cud”...
Yedlin knocks it out of the park.
This is costing workers, companies and the U.S. billions just so Obama may not lose the votes of the enviros or some unions.
Obama is one pathetic person.
I for the pipeline, but not its current route. I’m against running a pipe through one of the largest aquifers in the world that supplies a huge amount of irrigated water. 27% of the irrigated land in the U.S. overlies this aquifer which yields 30% of the nation’s groundwater used for irrigation. In addition, the aquifer supplies 82% of the drinking water for the people living within the boundaries of the aquifer.
(check the High Plains Regional Ground-Water Study: http://co.water.usgs.gov/nawqa/hpgw/factsheets/DENNEHYFS1.html )
Not to mention the fact that this is a state’s rights issues.
Do you understand we have been running petroleum across this aquifer for decades in many pipelines without the problems the environmentalist have dreamed up?
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