Levi Rickert, editor-in-chief in Native Challenges. Discussion »
Robert Redford Filming in 1984
SUNDANCE, UTAH - Twelve days ago, several Native leaders were arrested in front of the White House on Indigenous Day of Action. They were calling on President Obama to oppose 1,700 mile the Keystone XL pipeline that if completed will extend from Alberta, Canada down to the Gulf of Mexico.
Actor, director Robert Redford, is now calling on President Obama to oppose the Keystone XL pipeline. Redford in a statement released Monday writes:
“Instead of laying pipes across the plains, it's time to draw a line in the sand. The Keystone XL is a bad idea that needs to be stopped.”
"Tar sands crude - bitumen - is nearly solid at room temperature. To flow through pipelines, it must be diluted with highly volatile natural gas liquids, then pumped under pressure at temperatures as high as 150 degrees Fahrenheit."
"This bitumen mix is more corrosive and abrasive than ordinary crude, and it's harder on pipelines. An existing Keystone pipeline that runs tar sands crude from Canada to the United States has failed 12 times in just its first year of operation."
"A year ago this summer, a pipeline failure gushed 840,000 gallons of tar sands crude into Michigan's Kalamazoo River. Cleanup costs have already topped $500 million, and 30 miles of the river remains closed a year on."
Redford's opposition comes at a critical time as opposition mounts on President Obama to oppose the Keystone XL pipeline project. Last month, the National Congress of American Indians opposes the pipeline.
“Homeland and economic security starts with energy security, but Indian Country wants it to be done right; not at the expense of the health of our communities and resources, both tribal and non-tribal,”
said Jefferson Keel, President of National Congress of American Indians, citing the importance of looking to clean domestic energy as a more reliable solution. "During challenging economic times in our country and in our tribal nations, domestic energy when developed responsibly can create jobs while ensuring that our people and natural resources remain safe and plentiful."
posted September 14, 2011 10:20 am edt
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