The Norman Transcript

Opinion

January 24, 2012

Why we need the Keystone pipeline

NORMAN — “Game on” was the cry from the industry. “Game over” was the cry from the environmentalists, as they expressed their feelings over the Keystone pipeline construction. The true story lies somewhere between.

Some media commentators describe an abrasive arrogance that emanates publicly from various figures in the oil patch. To them, this arrogance reflects an insulation coming from a lack of communication with the non-oil types and the environmentalist groups derisively believed to be a bunch of ignorant, angry tree huggers.

On the other side, the so-called tree huggers exhibit a pernicious and pervasive polarity in their attitudes to the big oil “polluters.” This includes a congenital hatred of anything big, anything they do not understand and, in some cases, a primordial fear of progress itself. The extremes of these two groups are stubbornly obstinate, and their inabilities to see past the rhetoric leads to a dead-end of intransigence, stagnation, diminished opportunity and lost jobs.

Some would argue that the Canadian developers went about their project backwards. Instead of a branded multi-million dollar, upfront public effort to inform, shape and educate the public, they front-loaded their approach by budgeting tens of millions of dollars to pay for lawyers, lobbyists and experts to push this project through the local court systems — a bonanza for the legal profession and experts like myself. Some, however, would call this a good-business decision.

The pipeline should be a shoo-in. For anyone who is willing to approach the situation with an open mind, there are at least 10 pros that overshadow every single con.

In the first place, today, there are more than a 100 pipelines that crisscross the same region contemplated by this new pipeline. The map looks like a spaghetti plot overlying the 174,000-square-mile Ogallala aquifer. These lines are not only carrying oil of generally better flow quality but also lighter oil products which — to the learned, concerned individual — are more environmentally dangerous in the event of a spill than the tar sand crude.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Opinion
  • Quite the resilient bunch

    The people of Moore are a resilient bunch. They’ve bounced back from tornadoes before, but the current renaissance may be the quickest yet. FEMA officials said it would take two years to see some sense of normalcy. That’s hardly the case....

    July 24, 2014

  • A fresh start for VA

    All of us have high hopes for the confirmation and success of Veterans Affairs Secretary nominee Robert McDonald. If confirmed — and most believe he’s a shoe-in — McDonald will take over a paralyzed system of health care that is not ...

    July 24, 2014

  • Call up National Guard

    We’re not sure it will help, but you have to hand it to Texas Gov. Rick Perry. He deployed up to 1,000 Texas National Guard troops to help secure his state’s border with Mexico this week....

    July 23, 2014

  • It’s only getting worse

    Conditions for children in Oklahoma were starting to look up for a few years, according to the annual Kids Count reports. Now we know it wasn’t getting better. The recession was impacting the rest of the country, dropping their scores....

    July 23, 2014

  • Noting a life well lived

    James Garner never intended to be a movie and television star. He just kind of lucked into it, he would tell those who asked. If you have the itch to act, get a good-paying job and spend your free time at your local community theater, he ...

    July 22, 2014

  • Recount that really matters

    Americans have been hearing a lot about Congressional elections, but there’s another one halfway around the globe that will matter far more....

    July 22, 2014

  • Runoffs get no respect

    The Aug. 26 Republican runoff election for the Cleveland County District 3 commissioner post is one of only 18 races on ballots around the state. Only two races are statewide — the Democrat contests for U.S. Senator nominee and state ...

    July 22, 2014

  • Change some lines

    Editor, The Transcript: Looking at how our elected Republican friends are reacting to the refugee children crossing the border and now being housed in Lawton, I have a suggestion. Let’s edit the Christian Bible in several places to reflect ...

    July 21, 2014

  • New health care system demonized

    To the Editor: In October 2013, soon after we were asked to take over management responsibilities at our family business, we were visited by the company’s health insurance agent. She explained that a decision needed to be made regarding ...

    July 21, 2014

  • Norman Forward builds momentum

    The quiet campaign to build momentum for a citywide public works project is beginning to attract some attention....

    July 20, 2014