Our very own Danny Ruthenberg-Marshall speaks out in opposition to the proposed Keystone XL Pipeline.
“My name is Danny Ruthenberg-Marshall. I am a member of the Maryland Student Climate Coalition and an organic farm worker from southern Maryland. When I look at DC, I see the frontlines of politics, of a political system where money buys power and the people are ignored; a system where our so-called public servants bow to corporations; a system where the long-term well-being of the public trust is ignored in favor of the short-term profits of the already wealthy. It’s a flawed system that we cannot fix immediately. But we can take a step in the right direction. You have an opportunity to break that cycle and say no to corporate interests. You can say that our environment is more important than corporate profit, and we will not sacrifice it. You can give the country back to the people who love it dearly. Say no to corporate greed and yes to public need. Say no to the Keystone XL Pipeline, and yes to true energy independence. Say yes to a clean future based on renewables built in this country by American labor. Creating temporary jobs and shipping energy abroad is not conducive to building a productive America, nor is is conducive to energy security and independence. Break the political cycle, break the collusion between corporate interests and government decision makers, and build a better and brighter American Future!”
The Maryland Student Climate Coalition is proud to have the opportunity to voice our concerns regarding the Keystone XL Pipeline. According to the Sierra Club, oil produced from tar sands generates three times the greenhouse gas emissions as a barrel of conventional oil. Extraction, transportation, and refinement of oil produced from tar sands impacts air quality by releasing volatile organic compounds including sulfur dioxide, carbon monoxide, nitrous oxide, benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, xylene, and formaldehyde. Large quantities of water are required for tar sands extraction operations and would draw down surface water flow, adversely impacting stream habitat for fish and other species dependent on local water resources. Drilling one well consumes 5.5 acre-feet of water each year, and the production of one gallon of oil requires thirty-five gallons.
As you can tell, the environmental costs of constructing the TransCanada Keystone XL Pipeline vastly overshadow any economic value our country stands to gain. We encourage you to download our 2011 Offshore Wind campaign toolkit and circulate the attached petition to members of your community in support of sustainable energy initiatives.