San Diegans Called on Obama to Reject Keystone Pipeline During La Jolla Visit

by on May 9, 2014 · 5 comments

in Energy, Environment, Health, History, Organizing, Politics, San Diego, World News

Rally along Torrey Pines Road with 50’ Keystone Pipeline Banner, signs, chants

From SanDiego350

On Thursday, May 8, 2014, over 100 San Diegans gathered along Torrey Pines Road in La Jolla to call on President Obama, who was in the neighborhood for a fundraiser, to reject a permit for the Keystone XL Pipeline. The “KXL”, which would carry dirty tar sands oil from Canada to Texas for refining and export, has been called “game over” for the climate by the nation’s foremost climatologist, Dr. James Hansen.

Participants held large signs, including a 50-foot cardboard depiction of the Keystone Pipeline with the words “Stop the Keystone Pipeline. Fight climate change” in huge letters on it, and a large banner with a quote from the President that participants want to see him keep:

“We will respond to the threat of climate change, knowing that the failure to do so would betray our children and future generations.”

SanDiego350’s Emily Wier said that the KXL will greatly increase greenhouse gas emissions and worsen the impacts of climate change – including significant sea level rise, more extreme and frequent storms and wildfires, water shortages, and increases in heat and infectious disease-related health problems – while creating only a few dozen on-going jobs.

“Fully exploiting the tar sands will make the most serious effects of global warming inevitable. We need the President to reject the Keystone XL Pipeline, say he’ll veto a pro-pipeline bill in the Senate, and start demonstrating national and global leadership on climate change.”

Phil Petrie, a local artist in North Park, said that the country’s lack of response to devastating climate change is a moral issue.

“We have a responsibility to the planet and to future generations to hold our government accountable to take immediate action on climate change. We are here now to make it known to President Obama that we, the people, say: The time is now! Reject this pipeline!”

Eleven-year old Siena also spoke movingly, saying,

“Let me tell you what we kids really need. We don’t need oil. We need clean air to breathe, fresh water to drink, and clean oceans to swim in.”

SanDiego350’s Michael Brackney led the demonstrators in rousing chants, including, “Climate change is here to stay, fossil fuels are not the way,” and “Tell Obama now’s the time, to stop the Keystone Pipeline!”

Bob Braaton said:

“When this fight started all bets were on the fossil fuel industry – everyone thought the pipeline would go through – but now it’s looking more likely that the pipeline could be rejected. That’s because of us in San Diego, and people just like us all around the country, who have stood up to say ‘enough!’”

Peg Mitchell of San Marcos said:

“I’m here today for my six grandchildren. If I didn’t act to stop this horrifying threat to their future, I couldn’t live with myself.”

SanDiego350.org, an all-volunteer organization, is concerned about climate change and its very real effects on our livelihoods, well-being, and the future for our children. We work to increase awareness of climate change and advocate for reducing greenhouse gas emissions. We are loosely affiliated with 350.org, the international climate organization, whose work inspires us.

{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

avatar jan freed May 9, 2014 at 2:09 pm

There are many good reasons to say “no” to Keystone.
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It will not create the jobs claimed* for it, nor will it reduce prices at the pump. In fact, prices may go up as domestic oil finds easier ways overseas.
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It threatens drinking water supplies.
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But most importantly, the IEA estimates that Keystone could harvest 3 times the carbon that would take us over 2 degrees C, the absolute limit for a catastrophe we might survive, if we’re lucky. And other carbon projects are in the wings, taking us up to +6 deg. C, with “massive climate change and irreparable damage” How reckless can we be?
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See: “IEA acknowledges fossil fuel reserves climate crunch”?http://priceofoil.org/2012/11/
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We are warned of this climate abyss by our most trusted messengers, such as NOAA, NASA, every scientific academy, such as the Royal Academy of UK (SIr Isaac Newton was president), the National Academy of Sciences (Einstein was a member), the very conservative World Bank, fact-checked by National Geographic, Scientific American.
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We are told of current disastrous health effects by the ?American Academy of Pediatrics, the World Health Organization and the AMA.
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We cannot rely on State Department assessments, if made by employees of the carbon industries.
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And Keystone could eventually strip forests the size of Florida, forests that might have absorbed enormous quantities of CO2 before they were removed as “overburden”.
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Would Keystone “replace” those forests? They’ve said they would make good any future? damage. Laughable.
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Even 2 degrees itself may be too high – a “prescription for disaster”?says Dr. James Hansen, chief climatologist at NASA (ret.), one who, early on, predicted many of the catastrophic effects that we have seen.
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Many of us know the bitter taste of the weird weather out there, with just current warming of .8 deg C. Recent consequences over the World and the U.S. are tallied here:
?http://www.climatehotmap.org/
?http://www.pinterest.com/clima
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Shall we roll the dice for our kids and grand kids, saying “let it ride!” beyond 2 degrees and more? More, and we might invite abrupt, irreversible changes.
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No, taking your kids to to soccer practice or Disney World does not make up for that.
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With its high risks and low return, Keystone XL is not a smart gamble. Better is a price on carbon pollution that will boost sustainable energy (and hybrids) and a rebate check to citizens. . Or the DOD building 50GW of wind/solar, returning revenues to taxpayers.
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?——*?*jobs http://www.ilr.cornell.edu/glo…?A recent State Dept. study said the construction workforce would be 5,000 to 6,000 workers. And once the construction phase ends, almost all of these jobs, however many are created, would go away.

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avatar Katydid52 May 9, 2014 at 4:52 pm

What can we do today and tomorrow to eliminate using any foreign oil? There isn’t enough interest in solar, and few people want electric cars. We continue to need crude and will for some time.

There needs to be interim steps we can take to move away from foreign oil, not live in the fantasy that we can wake up tomorrow and everyone will be off the grid and driving a Volt.

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avatar Marc S May 10, 2014 at 11:57 am

The oil companies think oil spills are good business, make money drilling for it and cleaning it up when you spill it. This project has to be stopped and the Tar Sands oil left in the ground.

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avatar Marc S May 10, 2014 at 3:38 pm

According to source on both sides of this debate, this is becoming the most expensive environmental battle ever. With the most people involved since the 80’s anti-nuke movement. TransCanadaCorp has had 10 fulltime lobbyists in DC since 2009 who have spent $4 million. The American Petroleum Institute reported $2.6 million in the last quarter of 2013 alone. This is just advertising money. The political contributions from the oil and gas industry were in the neighborhood of $80 million last election cycle 90% for Republicans. In Canada the Conservative Party is the same deal but money involved is about 1/100 of the US.

350.org sponsored an action in Ottawa today behind Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s official residence:

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avatar Marc Snelling May 10, 2014 at 3:39 pm

Here’s a photo from Ottawa activists against the pipeline. .

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