The State Department issued a report on Friday endorsing the proposed Keystone XL oil pipeline from Canada to the Gulf Coast, and saying that the project does is not a serious threat to the environment. State Department officials released the report as hundreds of protesters demonstrating against the pipeline have been arrested in front of the White House since Monday. Recent oil spills from pipelines in Montana and off the coast of Great Britain in the North Sea have galvanized environmental opposition. Activists say the Keystone XL pipeline would pose both immediate and long-term risks to the environment, including hazards from a leak or spill. Tar sands oil is also environmentally damaging to extract and pollutes more than other forms of oil when burned. The pipeline would span nearly 2,000 miles from Alberta, Canada to Texas. Pending legal challenges and final approval by the Obama administration, the pipeline could be complete as early as 2013.
Read more at The New York Times
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