Thursday, September 29, 2011

The US State Dept. TransCanada Keystone XL Pipeline

The US State Dept. has outsourced much of its responsibility for determining whether to give approval to the TransCanada Keystone XL pipeline to TransCanada consultant Cardno-ENTRIX, including  :

1) the State Dept.'s TransCanada KeystoneXL webpage - see the tiny print at the bottom ,

2) two Environmental Impact Statements(EIS) and Presidential Permits for international border crossing  (Great commentary and an explanation on how EIS work from Scarecrow at FireDogLake), and

3) the public hearings held in the states along the length of the proposed pipeline - Montana, South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas, Oklahoma, and Texas - with a final one in Washington DC on October 9.

Should you wish to send your opinion of the pipeline proposal directly to the US State Dept, Cardno-ENTRIX handles that too.

The US State Dept has inserted a corporation between itself and the people it was elected to serve.

Excellent article and new information on this extraordinary conflict of interest from Brad Johnson at Think Progress yesterday, with thanks to his link to a Creekside post back in July , where we noted :

 Cardno-ENTRIX explains on their website :
Keystone XL Oil Pipeline Project EIS

Client : TransCanada Keystone Pipeline, L.P. (Keystone)
"TransCanada Keystone Pipeline, L.P. (Keystone) has applied to the U.S. Department of State (DOS) for a Presidential Permit ....
Keystone contracted with Cardno ENTRIX as the third-party contractor to assist DOS in preparing the EIS and to conduct the Section 106 consultation process."
and again in a Cardno Mergers Presentation :
Keystone and Keystone XL Pipelines

Client : US Department of State and TransCanada
ENTRIX is the prime contractor for the preparation of two third party EIS’s for the US Department of State and TransCanada Keystone Crude Oil Pipeline System.The project features 1,702 miles of new 36-inch diameter pipeline (327 miles in Canada and 1,375 miles in U.S.) with capacity for 900,000 barrels per day.
So how did those Cardno-ENTRIX public pipeline hearings go?

People arriving 45 minutes early to the Port Arthur, Texas hearing found "hundreds" of people already there in t-shirts which read BUILD KEYSTONE XL NOW! GOOD JOBS! U.S. SECURITY!
"Once we were allowed to sign up to speak (at a table staffed by Cardno Entrix, according to their name tags) we entered the room to find the first 8-10 rows, (left side:suits, right side: oil field workers), filled by these individuals and their slogans."
By the time people in opposition got their turn, it was getting late and their time to speak was cut back.
But at least they didn't get arrested for it.

Austin, Texas :
"According to Karen Hadden, the Executive Director of the Sustainable and Economic Development (SEED) Coalition, “This was not a hearing, this was a farce.” Ms. Hadden arrived and had been waiting for a couple of hours to give comments when they cut the hearing off. Later, when she was attempting to find out what her options were for providing comments to the State Department given she was unable to do so at the hearing, she was told she must leave the premises or she would be arrested."
Ms Hadden provides a photo of someone else being arrested for 'expressing concerns about the flawed process'.
The public hearings along the pipeline route are now over.

There's been no media interest so far up here in Canada that TransCanada and the US State Dept have apparently shared the use of a "professional environmental consulting company" in the almost certain future approval of the KeystoneXL pipeline.

Must be part of that "Shaping the Future" thing.


West End Bob said...

WTF ? ! ? !

jaysoos h. keer-iste.

Not even a hint of doubt how this is gonna turn out, is there?

The Fix is definitely in . . . .

Anonymous said...

Are you surprised? Why are you surprised? We're a plutocracy now, have been for some time...

Anonymous said...

Google 'exporting energy security keystone xl exposed' for a little truth behind the bafflegab.

Alison said...

Bob : No, there isn't.

Anon1 : Now? We've always been a plutocracy - the whole history of western civilization is serial plutocracies. But even plutocracies have rules and this one is unravelling them at an increasing pace.

Anon2 : Thanks. I got the link you left to Exporting Energy Security - Keystone XL Exposed last night, supposing you are the same Anon ;-), but was busy. Good report. Had read before.

There'll come a point fairly soon when public figures blatting on about K-XL and energy security in the same breath will be met with howls of derision and smirks.
It's a classic bait and switch.
So is the idea that we have to trade sovereignty for a thinner border. Why? Exports to the US rose continualy after 9/11 right up till the economic crunch so obviously nothing to do with US security issues.
These two bait and switch strategies - K-XL and the security perimeter - are linked somehow but I can't quite get my around how it works - other than both suit the usual suspects of course.

Anonymous said...

Re your belief that the K-XL and the 'Security' perimeter are linked, struck a chord with me as well.

Please correct me if I am on the wrong track here, but does the 'security' perimeter also have a connection to these 'free trade zones' that I hear being bandied about.

One in Manitoba and one in BC?

Does this correlate to the Texas destination of K-XL which is likewise a 'free trade zone'.

By 'free trade'we should read 'tax free or tax exempt'.

The greatest benefactors of course will be the oil companies and related entities.

I can see the 'free trade zone' in BC being for the looming Asian Invasion, but Winnipeg?

In any event it appears to be islands of convenience for companies to not have to pay taxes to the countries they wish to utilize for their purposes.

I'll bet there are similar zones all around the world that act as tax shelters.

Throw in the offshore banks to hold the largess and we're all pretty much screwed over.

Whaddup with the Winnipeg zone?

Alison said...

Anon : Winnipeg? Sometimes it helps to look at a map! ;-)

Deloitte, the company hired to advise on downsizing the federal public service, did a FTZ feasibility study for the federal government in 2008.

K-XL, FTZs, and security perimeter issues are the most recent permutations of the SPP, but done more incrementally and even more beyond the purview of parliament and therefore the media. No big target on their backs this time round!
CETA, with its proposed authority to challenge provincial and municipal initaiatives and spending if they inhibit corporate profit, would complete the pincer movement.

Politics as we have understood it - of, for, or relating to citizens - is facing total redundancy here.

You got caught in the blogger spam filter earlier. Don't worry if it happens again - I find them eventually - but would you mind signing off your posts with something. You can still be anon; just stick some name on the end.

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