Against seemingly insurmountable odds, a nationwide movement of civil disobedience—comprised of everyone from Nebraskan landowners to Nobel Laureates and renowned climate scientists—has succeeded in the fight to stop the Keystone XL pipeline. For now.
Earlier today, President Obama sent Keystone XL back to the State Department for a through and independent re-review, specifically highlighting concerns over the proposed route of the pipeline and its impacts on the climate. Most energy analysts have indicated that a delay like this would effectively kill the project, but nevertheless, opponents of the pipeline have vowed to renew the fight if the State Department proposes a new route in the coming 16-18 months.
Over the past few months, we’ve followed the U.S. Chamber’s Keystone XL lobbying closely, and have been astounded at the outright lying and fear-mongering that it has stooped to in order to gain national support for a project that would benefit only a handful of the country’s wealthiest oil industry executives at the expense of the American people. It went on a whirlwind publicity and media push, publishing Op-Eds riddled with falsehoods and making numerous public appearances, created fake grassroots citizens groups in the Midwest to make robo-calls to residents, and lobbied extensively to rush the construction of the pipeline, despite an outcry of concerns regarding public health and environmental safety.
And yet, even in the face of a behemoth corporate lobbying organization like the U.S. Chamber—whose political and spending power knows no bounds—the people triumphed. This truly was an unlikely win, and we want to thank the supporters of “The U.S. Chamber Doesn’t Speak for Me” campaign for not being afraid to stand up to the power of the U.S. Chamber in this fight and many others. Thank you.