Keystone XL Defeated by Senate Democrats; 59 to 41
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Democrats in the Senate defeated bills today that would have approved the construction of the Keystone XL oil pipeline.
The Canadian company TransCanada wanted to begin building the northern section of the oil pipeline that would stretch 2,000 miles from Alberta, Canada to the Guld Coast of Texas. The proposed pipeline would carry 800,000 barrels per day of tar sands oil across the United States to be refined, exported and burned. Environmental activists have opposed the pipeline construction, citing the risk of oil spills and an increase in carbon emissions from the project.
According to the SierraClub, “extracting tar sands is one of the most destructive projects on earth.” Friends of the Earth said that the Keystone XL pipeline “could devastate ecosystems, pollute water sources and jeopardize public health.”
If it were to pass, President Obama was expected to veto the bills. The final vote was a narrow 59 in favor to 41 in opposed, failing to reach the 60 votes needed to pass. Forty Democrats and one Independent voted against the bill, while 14 Democrats joined all the Republicans in support of Keystone XL.