By Steve Kretzmann
You deserve the truth. And the truth is that President Obama has deeply disappointed us.
On March 21, President Obama said, “You have my word that we will keep drilling everywhere we can." In Cushing, Oklahama, the president stood in a TransCanada pipeline yard and issued a new Executive Order “expediting” the permit process for the southern half of the Keystone XL pipeline.
No, that wasn’t Sarah Palin. That was President Obama embracing the "drill baby drill" rhetoric, and betraying all of us who have fought so hard to stop the Keystone XL pipeline.
It looks like the more than $1.2 million that the oil industry has given to President Obama over his career has paid off.
The president talks a good game on ending subsidies to the oil industry. But essentially, his Executive Order is a new subsidy. By “expediting” the permit process for this tar sands export pipeline, the president is saving the oil industry millions of dollars, and potentially circumventing important laws designed to protect the health and environment of all Americans.
And for what? Building this pipeline will not lower gas prices. It will not put many Americans to work. It will not enhance America’s energy security.
Building the pipeline will supply Gulf Coast refiners including the Saudi-owned Motiva with oil for export. It will line the pockets of the oil industry with even more profits. And it will continue our nation’s dangerous dependence on oil.
The president acknowledged in his speech that the oil market is global, and that the situation in Iran—not anything to do with pipelines or domestic drilling—is what is causing prices to rise. He needs to follow through on that logic.
The problem isn’t rising gas prices. The problem is that we Americans use too much gas. The only way we will insulate ourselves from swings in the global oil market—not to mention reducing our emissions to slow climate change—is to use less. The president’s actions take us in exactly the wrong direction.
This fight isn’t over. In fact, I promise you, it’s just beginning.
As a first step, join me in contacting the White House today to express our deep disappointment in the president’s actions, along with our determination to stop him from “drilling everywhere."
Thanks for your ongoing commitment to separate oil and state. Together, we can ensure that eventually, our politicians will listen to the people, not Big Oil.
For more information, click here.
At first glance, you wouldn't think avocados and almonds could harm bees; but a closer look at how these popular crops are produced reveals their potentially detrimental effect on pollinators.
Migratory beekeeping involves trucking millions of bees across the U.S. to pollinate different crops, including avocados and almonds. Timothy Paule II / Pexels / CC0<p>According to <a href="https://www.fromthegrapevine.com/israeli-kitchen/beekeeping-how-to-keep-bees" target="_blank">From the Grapevine</a>, American avocados also fully depend on bees' pollination to produce fruit, so farmers have turned to migratory beekeeping as well to fill the void left by wild populations.</p><p>U.S. farmers have become reliant upon the practice, but migratory beekeeping has been called exploitative and harmful to bees. <a href="https://www.cnn.com/2019/05/10/health/avocado-almond-vegan-partner/index.html" target="_blank">CNN</a> reported that commercial beekeeping may injure or kill bees and that transporting them to pollinate crops appears to negatively affect their health and lifespan. Because the honeybees are forced to gather pollen and nectar from a single, monoculture crop — the one they've been brought in to pollinate — they are deprived of their normal diet, which is more diverse and nourishing as it's comprised of a variety of pollens and nectars, Scientific American reported.</p><p>Scientific American added how getting shuttled from crop to crop and field to field across the country boomerangs the bees between feast and famine, especially once the blooms they were brought in to fertilize end.</p><p>Plus, the artificial mass influx of bees guarantees spreading viruses, mites and fungi between the insects as they collide in midair and crawl over each other in their hives, Scientific American reported. According to CNN, some researchers argue that this explains why so many bees die each winter, and even why entire hives suddenly die off in a phenomenon called colony collapse disorder.</p>
Avocado and almond crops depend on bees for proper pollination. FRANK MERIÑO / Pexels / CC0<p>Salazar and other Columbian beekeepers described "scooping up piles of dead bees" year after year since the avocado and citrus booms began, according to Phys.org. Many have opted to salvage what partial colonies survive and move away from agricultural areas.</p><p>The future of pollinators and the crops they help create is uncertain. According to the United Nations, nearly half of insect pollinators, particularly bees and butterflies, risk global extinction, Phys.org reported. Their decline already has cascading consequences for the economy and beyond. Roughly 1.4 billion jobs and three-quarters of all crops around the world depend on bees and other pollinators for free fertilization services worth billions of dollars, Phys.org noted. Losing wild and native bees could <a href="https://www.ecowatch.com/wild-bees-crop-shortage-2646849232.html" target="_self">trigger food security issues</a>.</p><p>Salazar, the beekeeper, warned Phys.org, "The bee is a bioindicator. If bees are dying, what other insects beneficial to the environment... are dying?"</p>
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
Australia is one of the most biodiverse countries in the world. It is home to more than 7% of all the world's plant and animal species, many of which are endemic. One such species, the Pharohylaeus lactiferus bee, was recently rediscovered after spending nearly 100 years out of sight from humans.
Scientists have newly photographed three species of shark that can glow in the dark, according to a study published in Frontiers in Marine Science last month.
- 10 Little-Known Shark Facts - EcoWatch ›
- 4 New Walking Shark Species Discovered - EcoWatch ›
- 5 Incredible Species That Glow in the Dark - EcoWatch ›
FedEx's entire parcel pickup and delivery fleet will become 100 percent electric by 2040, according to a statement released Wednesday. The ambitious plan includes checkpoints, such as aiming for 50 percent electric vehicles by 2025.
- Which Is Worse for the Planet: Beef or Cars? - EcoWatch ›
- Greenhouse Gas Levels Hit Record High Despite Lockdowns, UN ... ›
- 1.8 Billion Tons More Greenhouse Gases Will Be Released, Thanks ... ›