Climate Action

It’s not about the jobs, Keystone XL It’s not about the jobs, Keystone XL

President Obama used his third Presidential veto on Tuesday to block the passage of the controversial Keystone XL Pipeline.

Proponents for the TransCanada Corp project claim it would generate upwards of 20,000 jobs while bringing over 830,000 barrels a day of predominately Canadian oil into the U.S.

The issue is, these numbers never held up.

The U.S. State Department estimates that a mere 5,000 to 6,000 construction short term construction jobs would be created. Jobs are jobs, and even 5,000 would seem like a great win for many communities still recovering from the economic downturn. Unfortunately, the vast majority of these jobs would disappear after the two-year construction period, leaving thousands once again unemployed.

On the other hand, clean energy and transportation industries are on track to create nearly 12,500 American jobs between April and June. With a growing population, our energy needs will increase well into the future. Investing in renewable infrastructure creates jobs domestically, supporting local communities while paving the way for a sustainable future.

As we continue to invest more in renewables, they will continue to become increasingly affordable. In some parts of the world, unsubsidized clean energy is now even cheaper than coal or gas sources. Australia, for example, reached this point in 2013, because of significant strides in production and investment.

Prices for solar panels alone are down more than 65 percent over the last five years, a trend that will continue as we increase our commitment to such green technologies.  Industries like geothermal, solar, wind and even emerging tidal sources are our energy future. The more we invest, the more benefits well see.

President Obama didnt veto the Keystone XL pipeline because it will further endanger the black-footed ferret or any of the other at-risk species that would be harmed. He vetoed it because its not right for us our jobs, our safety, or our future. 


Kegan Gerard, Intern