If President Obama approves it, a 1,700-mile pipeline will be built from Alberta to the Texas Gulf Coast, connecting Canadian oil sand mines to our refineries.
Proponents say something has to be done with the vast reserves to our North, and that bringing them in will lessen our reliance on oil from the volatile Middle East. But environmentalists and even some conservatives are not yet sold on the plan -- mainly because of the dangers should an oil spill happen somewhere along the way.
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East Texans are questioning whether they'll be able to use their wells and fish in their rivers if there's a contamination.
The Keystone XL pipeline would be able to carry as much as 830,000 barrels a day of a form of semi-solid petroleum the consistency of asphalt, called bitumen. During the process to liquify it, it is mixed with natural-gas condensate or synthetic crude oil which because it is much thicker than conventional sweet crude, the diluted bitumen will move through the pipeline at pressures of up to 1,300 pounds per square inch and temperatures as high as 150 degrees.
So protestors have started coming out, trying to stop the work from proceeding. More legal routes have been adopted by landowners who don't want TransCanada and its pipeline coming through their property. So far, they haven't been winning.
To get the whole story, check out No, Canada by Brantley Hargrove and decide for yourself whether the super duper pipeline will be a blessing or a curse for this state.