On his energy tour across burberry ties America, President Barack Obama can’t seem to win for losing.
During a stop Thursday in Oklahoma, Obama announced the administration would “cut through the red tape” for the southern leg of the Keystone XL pipeline — disappointing environmentalists who had counted it a victory when the president denied a permit for the project’s full, Canada-to-Texas version.
At the same time, Obama incited the ire of some political opponents who called his late embrace of TransCanada’s oil pipeline disingenuous.
Obama issued an executive order creating a steering committee that is supposed to devise improvements in permitting decisions but not to get involved in any particular project. He also signed a memo that directs federal agencies to “coordinate and expedite their reviews, consultations and other processes” to speed up decisions on domestic oil pipeline projects — such as Keystone XL’s southern, Oklahoma-to-Texas segment.
“Right now, burberry handbags outlet a company called TransCanada has applied to build a new pipeline to speed more oil from Cushing to state-of-the-art refineries down on the Gulf Coast,” the president said, standing in front of rows of green-tinted pipes for an outdoor speech on a chilly, overcast morning at a TransCanada pipe storage yard near Cushing, Okla.
“And today, I’m directing my administration to cut through the red tape, break through the bureaucratic hurdles and make this project a priority, to go ahead and get it done,” he said.
Obama tied the announcement burberry sneakers women into a theme he has been pounding hard lately: that oil and gas are a prime part of an “all of the above” energy strategy that also includes clean energy — but that drilling alone won’t ease the high gasoline prices that are burdening consumers and pulling down his poll numbers.
“Even if we opened up every inch of the country — if I put an oil rig on the [White House] South Lawn, if we had one right next to the Washington Monument … we’d still have to buy the rest of our needs from someplace else if we keep on using the same amount of energy, the same amount of oil,” Obama said. “The price of oil will still be set by the global market.”
Obama’s memo directing federal agencies to expedite review of Keystone’s southern segment wasn’t enough to calm the irritation of the pipeline’s supporters, who say it stops short of what is needed to lessen the nation’s dependence on foreign oil.
“The president can’t be all things to all people, but he is certainly trying” said Rep. Lee Terry (R-Neb.). “Well, the president’s ‘say-one-thing-and-do-another’ game hasn’t fooled anybody.”
A new Gallup Poll released Thursday morning ahead of Obama’s speech said 57 percent of Americans support building the entire Keystone XL pipeline, with 29 percent opposed.
Meanwhile, the president disappointed environmentalists who had counted it a victory when the president denied a permit for the full pipeline.
“We’ve seen an ‘all of the above’ energy strategy — and voters rejected it in 2008,” Friends of the Earth President Erich Pica said in a statement. “By refusing to make choices to prioritize clean energy over the outdated, dirty energy of the past, President Obama is abdicating his moral responsibility to lead. He’s giving in to political headwinds engineered by the big bucks of dirty energy industries.”
Gene Karpinski, president of the League of Conservation Voters, said instead Ray ban sunglasses of focusing on the Keystone project, Obama should continue focusing on cutting subsidies for the oil industry and supporting renewable fuels.
“Rather than rushing efforts to transport toxic oil across America’s heartland, we should focus on putting America back in control of our energy future — creating new clean energy jobs, reducing our dependence on burberry t shirts for men on sale oil and curbing harmful global warming pollution,” he said.
Robert Jones, TransCanada’s vice president for the Keystone pipeline project, said the company expects to receive permits for Keystone’s Cushing-to-Texas southern leg “by about midyear,” and construction would take less than a year.
One of the few groups that rushed to declare the tour a positive sign was the American Petroleum Institute.
“The bottom line is we welcome the president’s support for the southern leg of the Keystone XL pipeline and are encouraged they’re going to expedite the approval here,” API Executive Vice President Marty Durbin said. “Obviously, we want to call on him to go ahead and approve the entire pipeline. … [But] we want to take burberry sunglasses advantage of the fact that he’s saying the right things. Now we want to make sure he actually takes the actions to meet that.”
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