Let’s face it: Big Oil is used to getting its way. But not any more.
President Obama has just rejected a permit for the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline — a project that promised riches for the oil giants and an environmental disaster for the rest of us.
His decision represents a victory of historic proportions for NRDC and hundreds of thousands of committed activists who have waged an uphill, years-long fight against one of the most nightmarish fossil fuel projects of our time.
Thank Obama for Doing the Right Thing
Please thank the President right away for his game-changing decision.
But get ready to keep the pressure on the Obama administration — because Big Oil is going to fight back hard and fast.
Why? Because this was a prime-time fight. The oil giants made sure of that.
First, they had their Congressional boosters put the President to an election-year test by forcing him to decide the pipeline’s fate within 60 days. Then, the oil lobby itself rolled out its biggest PR guns to get the job done.
The head of the American Petroleum Institute sent the White House a very public and blatant warning: Approve the Keystone XL or face “huge political consequences.”
Big Oil put all its political capital on the line — and a ton of money, too — and lost!
They lost because millions of Americans — including you — stood up and said, “We’re done with fossil fuel schemes that destroy our land, poison our water and wreak havoc with our climate so that oil companies can make out like bandits.”
And because Big Oil lost, this is not the end of the fight. This is the beginning of the real battle for America’s energy future.
That battle will be fought in Congress, where Representatives who’ve collected $12 million from the oil & gas industry over the past two years are sure to try to raise Keystone from the dead . . . it will be fought in British Columbia, where the oil giants want to ram a tar sands pipeline and supertanker traffic through the heart of the Spirit Bear’s coastal rainforest home . . . it will be fought in the Polar Bear Seas, where the Interior Department has given tentative approval for Shell to begin drilling this summer . . . and it will be fought state by state where NRDC is championing clean energy alternatives to a grim, pollution-filled future of coal-fired power plants, environmentally destructive fracking and offshore oil spills.
I know you’ll stand with us shoulder to shoulder in the critical weeks, months and years ahead. We need your kind of never-say-die commitment — the kind that killed the Keystone XL and just made our collective future a little bit brighter. Φ
Frances Beinecke is the president of the Natural Resources Defense Council