Due to its chemical properties and its fossil fuel heavy extraction method, the Canadian oil that would flow through the Keystone pipeline would be very “dirty”. That is, compared to most other fossil fuels, Keystone oil will be bad for the environment.
I support the Keystone XL pipeline for two reasons:
First, even if the pipeline is never built, the dirty Canadian oil will be extracted, transported, sold and burned. The only difference: The oil will be will be transported to the Pacific coast and then carried to market by tanker. Stopping the pipeline will not prevent the extraction, transport, sale and burning of dirty Canadian oil.
Second, pipelines have historically provided a safe mode of transport for oil. Compared to other modes of transport, the rate of spillage from pipelines has been low. By contrast the mode of transport with, by far, the greatest rate of spillage is transport via ship (tankers). The vast majority of large transport spills have occurred during shipping accidents. This means that, if the pipeline is not built, the Canadian oil will be transported via the most risky of methods: Via tankers.
I don't understand why so many environmentalists are so invested in stopping the pipeline because:
If the pipeline is killed, the oil will still be extracted and burned and major spillage of the oil will be more likely.