An economist thinks President Obama will ultimately approve the
Keystone XL pipeline, but he says the president doesn't need to
Nick Loris of The Heritage Foundation believes that the
president will approve the pipeline, but thinks he should open
everything from federal lands to the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS),
the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) and beyond.
"I believe we should open it
all up and allow the states to really control their own economic
and environmental destiny," he tells OneNewsNow.
"You've seen the dramatic production of oil and gas on private
and state-owned lands; it's been a huge economic boon and they've
done so in an environmentally sensible manner -- so why not let
other states reap these economic benefits?"
Loris adds that if states determine that the price of a barrel
of oil is too low and it is uneconomical to drill in some areas,
that is fine -- but argues that at least the government should open
up these areas and give states the opportunity.
"If we start exporting more then that's fine too, but we should
at least have the opportunity to drill and explore these areas that
are currently off-limits," he says.
The Keystone XL pipeline was proposed in 2008. President Obama
rejected a GOP proposal to fast-track approval in January 2012,
citing "the arbitrary nature of a deadline that prevented the State
Department from gathering the information necessary to approve the
project and protect the American people."
However, a State Department environmental impact report in August 2011 stated that the pipeline
would pose "no significant impacts" to most resources if
environmental protection measures are followed, while also
acknowledging the pipeline would present "significant adverse
effects to certain cultural resources." The State Department
postponed a final decision in November 2011.