Scientists, economists press Obama to reject Keystone

More than 90 scientists and economists on Wednesday urged President Obama to reject the Keystone XL pipeline.

In a letter sent to Obama and Secretary of State John KerryJohn KerryNo. 2 State Department official to travel to China amid tensions US and Germany launch climate partnership Biden meets with Merkel in German leader's last official trip to Washington MORE on Wednesday ahead of a House vote on legislation that would approve the project, scientists and economists argued the pipeline would "exacerbate climate change by unlocking" oil sands development.

“Once again, we strongly urge you to reject the Keystone XL tar sands oil pipeline as a project that will contribute to climate change at a time when we should be doing all we can to put clean energy alternatives in place,” the letter circulated by the Natural Resources Defense Council states

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“As you both have made clear, climate change is a very serious problem. We must address climate change by decarbonizing our energy supply."

The scientists and economists cited a statement Obama made early in the pipeline's review process that he would not approve the project if it "significantly" contributed to global warming and said approval of the project would go against his "climate test."

Science educator Bill Nye is among those who signed the letter, which also touched on the recent comments released by the Environmental Protection Agency that questioned the limited impact the administration previously thought the pipeline would have on climate change.

The letter, which was also signed by scientists from the University of California, Berkeley; Princeton; Stanford; Harvard and more, comes as Obama is preparing to veto legislation that would bypass the administration's review process to approve the $8 billion project.