The US State Department recommends blowing off the 60 day deadline requested by congress, and Obama agrees with it. Barack Obama’s press release and a reaction from a labor union.
Curiously, the transcanada website offers different takes on the actual number of jobs created.
Earlier today, I received the Secretary of State’s recommendation on the pending application for the construction of the Keystone XL Pipeline. As the State Department made clear last month, the rushed and arbitrary deadline insisted on by Congressional Republicans prevented a full assessment of the pipeline’s impact, especially the health and safety of the American people, as well as our environment. As a result, the Secretary of State has recommended that the application be denied. And after reviewing the State Department’s report, I agree.
This announcement is not a judgment on the merits of the pipeline, but the arbitrary nature of a deadline that prevented the State Department from gathering the information necessary to approve the project and protect the American people. I’m disappointed that Republicans in Congress forced this decision, but it does not change my Administration’s commitment to American-made energy that creates jobs and reduces our dependence on oil. Under my Administration, domestic oil and natural gas production is up, while imports of foreign oil are down. In the months ahead, we will continue to look for new ways to partner with the oil and gas industry to increase our energy security –including the potential development of an oil pipeline from Cushing, Oklahoma to the Gulf of Mexico – even as we set higher efficiency standards for cars and trucks and invest in alternatives like biofuels and natural gas. And we will do so in a way that benefits American workers and businesses without risking the health and safety of the American people and the environment.
Environmental groups have used the Keystone XL as a disingenuous proxy for arguments about global warming. The pipeline would carry up to 900,000 barrels of oil a day from Canada’s Tar Sands to the U.S., reducing reliance on oil from hostile nations. While environmental groups decry Tar Sands development, the Canadian government and Trans-Canada, the company developing the Tar Sands, have made clear the oil will be developed – and possibly sold to China – regardless of whether Keystone XL is built.
In addition, experts believe the project would be the safest ever constructed. Design included 21,000 sensors, monitored by satellites to immediately detect leaks and automatically stop the flow of oil. In addition, a revised route alleviated concerns in Nebraska over the project crossing water resources. Overall, the pipeline has undergone more than 1,100 days of governmental review.
“The Administration and environmentalists have blown the whistle on workers trying to feed their families and keep a roof over their heads,” said O’Sullivan. “Instead of celebrating their victory by hugging a tree they should hug a jobless construction worker because they’re the ones who are going to need it.”
(I really appreciate your question, and have written a lengthy response. Hope you don’t mind :) But it is my sincere answer to your questions)
Well, my story is a curious one. When I got to college, I wasn’t really thinking about anything related to International Relations, but my interests grew the more I was exposed to various events. I always had a drive to understand “how things work”, particularly what influences other things - so I started out with a sort of personal psychological aspect to that, and eventually it expanded to include international relations, politics/power usage, and things like that.
In college, I was exposed to a lot of ‘issues’, as many scholars do, and had a hard time trying to figure out what to focus on - from environmental concerns, to development, to seeing the global financial situation become a mess. I’ve also had a wonderful number of cross-disciplinary education: I studied sustainable development in Senegal, but also attended business school classes, as well as anthropology and of course political science. So I suppose to that end I’m a supporter of “Liberal Arts”, but more about that later.
…What I’m getting at is that it’s been a very winding road for me. I used to regret it, because, after leaving college I felt so disoriented and like I didn’t have a clear path towards a career. But what that actually lead me to do is realize that I didn’t want a career in straight up International Relations — I had thought about working for the US State Department, or being a diplomat, or becoming a political analyst or think tank contributer… and while I still may do that, I realize that I want to do something else first.
I want to get a science degree. ! Outrageous, perhaps, but, a lot of the things I really want to get into would require more of a science (or engineering) degree, and I realize that I’m not averse to schooling so I might as well embrace it and go back. I want to get into nanoscience and applications for energy, and other such things - so that’s what I’m taking coursework towards, a degree in that area.
Now, to answer “what exactly do you research?”
There are different parts to the answer. I have various sort of “contractors” or “people who compensate me for doing research” - based on jobs, internships, etc. For one job, I study US politics, and also social and economic issues, generally speaking. Another is more international relations and globalization oriented. But for myself, I’m doing other things - I want to research nanoscience & nanotech, and related things, so I can educate myself for that field. And my passion is becoming more and more “Global Energy Policy”; I have a desire to become an energy expert for planet earth - our resources, limitations, opportunities, and obstacles. I would love to write a book on that someday, or become a professor teaching a course about such, although I want to teach about it in a specific way — I take a multi-disciplinary approach to things.
One of my favorite quotes is
“The science and engineering needed to develop clean technologies cannot be separated from the ecological study of Earth’s integrated human and natural systems or from the social science of human behavior and well-being” (Used to be on Cornell’s website for ACSF)
I believe there needs to be a lot of integration and a lot more awareness between fields of study that can often be somewhat isolated. I think business schools need more social science, and vice versa. I think the only way for me to really know about the world is to not limit what it is I understand, and not become prejudiced or ‘too comfortable to not understand more’.
So I suppose to try to be concise, I research how the world works. Different people have similar interests, and some pay me to also investigate things with them, which is nice. But I’m always learning more, trying to understand more deeply. Energy policy (and energy politics, infrastructure, the physics and chemistry and mechanics of energy — all that goes into how humans use energy and how such shapes society) is basically my main passion right now, and it’s something I would really like to get a career in or have a legacy of being a scholar about. So I’m trying to build more credentials in that field and get more education in that field.
(Heh, this tumblr is basically a huge database or data-dump of me finding interesting links or potentially places to follow up research on elsewhere. It’s really a great tool for this purpose it seems, as traditional blogs can be too cumbersome. I do have a website for more serious and original content but I don’t feel I have enough on it yet).
And to say what made me go in this direction? Well, the best answer is my curiosity. And perhaps my self-honesty that this is what I wanted to do, even if it’s not a clear, traditional path; even if I have to get another degree, or even if it takes more time and more money. I feel good about my choices; this is what I’d be doing if I had a billion dollars (or perhaps in Gold), and it’s what I’m doing now when I don’t yet have as much money as I’d like to, ha.
I’d encourage anyone to really try to figure out what they want and just go 100% into it, and keep trying to find out what is authentic for you. (Especially if it has to do with sustainability, science, or figuring out ways that the people on this world are going to have to relate to each other given limited resources and a growing population - but that’s just my subjective take on something that seems like a big problem/something to care about).
I’d ask you return questions about what has inspired you to go in the direction you are going in now…. but I’m not sure how to do that? Maybe I’ll have to ask you another question on your tumblr!
Thanks for asking
It’s a quote I want to remember.