Washington, D.C. – The House of Representatives voted 241-175 in favor of H.R. 3, which would force an immediate approval of the Keystone XL pipeline. Get Off Oil Program Director Daniel Gatti issued this statement in response:
“Tonight’s vote is a clear signal to President Obama that opposition to the Keystone pipeline is gaining momentum. While the ultimate outcome of tonight’s vote was expected, 175 Representatives decided to stand up for our environment and our climate by opposing this effort to fast track the Keystone XL pipeline. That represents a 48 vote improvement since last year, with 43 of 47 Freshmen Democrats voting against expediting the pipeline.
“The more Americans learn about tar sands oil, the less they want a tar sands pipeline running through our country. President Obama should reject the Keystone pipeline and help us build a future free from tar sands.
Tar sands oil represents one of the most environmentally destructive sources of energy ever developed. Producing oil from tar sands not only requires the clear cutting of forestland, but it emits massive air, water and global warming pollution. Transporting tar sands oil also risks more frequent and more destructive oil spills that would harm our waterways and communities.
“This legislation would provide the Keystone XL project with a special exemption from core environmental laws, including the Clean Water Act, the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and the Endangered Species Act. While we applaud the members of the House who had the courage to stand up and vote against this gift to polluters, today’s vote once again demonstrates that there are too many in the House of Representatives who are more interested in promoting Big Oil’s favorite project than in protecting our water, climate, and public health from the dirtiest oil companies in the world.”