Keystone XL: Against our national security

Never mind that the Canadian conglomerate behind Keystone XL wants to build it not to bring oil to the United States, but to the Gulf of Mexico to ship it to the highest bidder in the global marketplace.

Never mind that numerous studies show the pipeline won't do a thing to reduce gas prices. Even if Keystone XL tar sands oil were to remain in the United States, oil prices are set on world markets, not by any single country.
 

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Never mind that the environmental impact of getting oil by digging up tar sands in ancient Canadian forests and then burning it in our vehicles is simply disastrous, and that the job claims by pipeline proponents are unrealistic.

What proponents of Keystone XL are forgetting is the fundamental problem: Our country's addiction to oil.

Even if we got more oil from Canada, supporting the global petroleum industry supports all of the players in the market - including those that who would take our money then use it to wage war against us.
 
The United States uses more than 25 percent of the world's oil. There's no way we can get enough of it from a single supplier, whether it’s a friend, a foe or ourselves.
 
As a U.S. Army captain, I led tank and infantry mortar platoons in Kuwait and Iraq after graduating from West Point.
 
I lost too many friends there to roadside bombs that were designed, built and paid for by enemies financed with global oil revenues – revenues that come from us and others every time we fill up our gas tanks.
 
Allowing the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline will not create some magical solution to boost our economy, cut our gas prices and strengthen our national security.
 
Instead, allowing Keystone XL is like doubling down on a bad bet. And throwing good resources after bad isn’t smart - not on the battlefield, the company boardroom or in our economy.  

The real solution to our economic and national security problems isn't increasing our addiction to oil and forever chasing new sources of it, no matter where it leads or what it costs.

The real solution is weaning ourselves off of fossil fuels and replacing them with renewable energy we can generate ourselves.
 
Gensler is a member of Environmental Entrepreneurs; a fellow with the Truman National Security Project and a member of the board of the Better Future Project. He is an Iraq war veteran who now is a project developer for Borrego Solar.

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