Why the Keystone XL Pipeline is Still Needed

Aaron Flint posted on December 16, 2014 09:16 :: 1251 Views

As the price of oil continues to plunge, I’ve been asking the question- can we benefit from the lower prices at the pump while also looking at ways to keep higher cost domestic producers here in the Bakken producing? (I know, I’m trying to have my cake and eat it too)

Bottom line: the more efficient we can make the production, the more domestic producers can keep pumping, while domestic consumers benefit from lower prices.  That is also why I believe the Keystone pipeline is still valid and needed. Apparently the environmentalists understand this point as well.  I mean, heck, if the falling oil prices will, on their own, make the Keystone pipeline unnecessary- then there would be no need to block it, right?    

From the WSJ’s Capital Journal:

Environmentalists are using plunging oil prices to bolster their argument that President Obama should reject construction of the Keystone XL pipeline, writes Elana Schor of Politico. Using rail cars or trucks to bring Canadian tar sands oil to market is more expensive, they argue, so only the pipeline will make the oil viable at current prices.

Remember, there’s Bakken crude that will also be loaded onto that pipeline via the Montana on-ramp.  So what the environmentalists are saying is that, for those of you concerned that the Bakken may be on the verge of a dramatic downturn, the pipeline will also be a way to keep that portion of Bakken production up and running.   

Here’s the Politico piece that the WSJ was referring to:  Will cheap oil kill Keystone?

Canada continues to pin its hopes on the new Republican Congress giving new life to the $8 billion pipeline’s political hopes. But Canada’s heavy-fuel producers are facing a cash crunch as cheap crude chokes profits for some of the industry’s most expensive new projects, and Prime Minister Stephen Harper declared last week that trying to regulate oil emissions during the current price crash would be “crazy economic policy.”

Everywhere you look in the region, companies are cutting back: The company Canadian Oil Sands sliced its 2015 budget nearly in half compared with this year’s spending. Baytex slashed its dividends to stockholders by more than half, announcing a focus on U.S. oil assets. Cenovus described its 15-percent budget cut for 2015 as “capital restraint in the year ahead in the face of weaker oil prices.”

DailySignal.com: In These 13 States, Gas Is Selling for Below $2 a Gallon

Just two weeks ago, a sole gas station in Oklahoma swept headlines for dropping gas prices below $2 a gallon. Today, 13 states have joined that list, and the trend is expanding.

Gas for less than $1.90 a gallon can be found in at least one station in Oklahoma, Louisiana and Ohio, according to CNN. CNN cites 10 additional states– Alabama, Arizona, Colorado, Indiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, New Mexico, Texas and Virginia– that now have gas below $2 a gallon.


 The national average for a gallon of gasoline dropped 12 cents since last week to land at $2.55 on Monday, the lowest price in more than five years, according to AAA’s weekly report. Gasoline is down $1.15 from its 2014 peak and is 69 cents less than the same time last year. Prices are on track to drop at least another nickel by next week, taking the national average below $2.50 in time for Christmas, AAA noted.

Even still…

The Washington Examiner- Think Tanks: Why aren’t millennials spending? They’re broke

Donovan X Ramsey for Demos: It’s not about smart phones, selfies or social media. Millennials aren’t making some of life’s biggest purchases because we’re broke. As James Carville might say, “It’s the economy, stupid.”

Reading the money pages of popular publications as a millennial can be infuriating. Every other article seems to stumble through clumsy speculation about my generation’s financial decisions, as if they’re so mysterious.

A recent article for The Atlantic calls millennials “The Cheapest Generation” and expends more than 2,000 words to explain “why millennials aren’t buying cars or houses, and what that means for the economy.”

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