Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Nebraskans Live the Power in All of Us

As President Obama seems finally ready to address climate change, there is much uncertainty around the controversial Keystone XL pipeline.

Yet hope and inspiration can be found in a New York Times op-ed about how Nebraskans came together to fight the pipeline, which TransCanada wants to run through their state. 

It's about Nebraska, sure, but it's also about the power in all of us:

"Today, we still don’t know what will happen with this pipeline.  But we do know what has happened to us.  Our coalition allowed us to transform our feelings of sorrow, fear, anger and helplessness into something stronger and more durable.  We became agents of our fates and joined together in what the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. called a 'beloved community.'  We became a state of ordinary heroes who decided that money couldn’t buy everything and that some things were sacred.

The great global skirmishes of this century will be fought over food, energy, water, and dirt.  Our remote, conservative, flyover state seems like an odd place to make a stand for clean water and fertile land, but we will be at the heart of those battles.  We are fighting not only for ourselves but for people all over the world.  And we know that everywhere, in their particular places, people are fighting for us.  The campaign to stop the Keystone XL is not over. It won’t be over until we give up, and we aren’t giving up," said Mary Pipher, a psychologist from Nebraska.

Read the whole op-ed here.   

The Brief:  The Keystone XL pipeline will carry heavy crude across many US states on its way from Canada to the Gulf of Mexico. 

The Controversy:  People are concerned about safety, environmental damage, and sacred places.  People are also upset because the crude is derived from Canadian tar sands, which is  probably the most resource and carbon intensive way to produce oil.  Other people favor the pipeline because there is much money to be made.  Read all about the pipeline here.

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