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March 28, 2013

The State Department on Keystone XL: Who Needs Transparency?

PipelineAs we close in on the final three weeks of the last State Department public comment period on TransCanada's proposed Keystone XL tar sands pipeline (send your comment today!), the State Department continues its mess of an approval process.

Their latest misstep is the announcement that none of the public comments on Keystone XL will, in fact, be made public. The only way to see any of them? From Inside Climate News:

(T)he only way to see the comments themselves is by filing a request under the Freedom of Information Act, or FOIA, a process that can take so long that the Keystone debate could be over before the documents are made available. The public will not be able to access the full electronic docket on line.

This is just the latest problem in a series of inappropriate moves the State Department has made recently during the Keystone XL review process. For the latest Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement of Keystone XL, the State Department used a contractor that employs former TransCanada workers to write it. Then they redacted that information.

For such a massive, polluting project that would have tremendous damaging effects on people, our air, our water, and our climate - shouldn't this process be as open and transparent as possible? We already know we can't trust TransCanada, we should be able to trust the State Department.

But in the end, the most important move here would be to reject Keystone XL all together. Send your comment today.

-- Michael Marx, Beyond Oil Director


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