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Oglala Vice President To Visit Iowa October 10 and 11 - Why The Tar Sands Pipeline Is Bad For Iowa And Bad For America

posted Sep 22, 2012 6:06 AM by Rob Hogg

Oglala Vice President Tom Poor Bear from Pine Ridge in South Dakota will be touring Iowa on Wednesday, October 10 and Thursday, October 11, to share why the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline is a threat to the Oglala Lakota Nation and other native peoples and native lands.  On October 10, he will be joined by Randy Thompson, a farmer and rancher from Merrick County, Nebraska, who has been the leading opponent of the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline in Nebraska since TransCanada first threatened to condemn his family’s farm to construct the tar sands pipeline.

Here is the schedule of events for Vice President Poor Bear:

Wednesday, October 10

2:30 p.m. – Press conference at the State Capitol (west steps or, in case of rain, Room 116)

3:30 p.m. – Discussion at Drake University in Des Moines (location to be determined)

8:00 p.m. – ISU National Affairs Lecture Series in the Great Hall, Memorial Union, at Iowa State

Thursday, October 11

11:00 a.m. – Community Discussion at Brewed Cafe, 1101 Third Street SE, in Cedar Rapids

1:30 p.m. – Lecture at the University of Iowa, S401 Pappajohn Business School

Please mark your calendars now and plan to attend one or more of these events.

Sponsors of this tour include Iowa Interfaith Power & Light, Sierra Club, Central Iowa Sierra Group, Priairiewoods, the Iowa Wildlife Federation, the ISU National Affairs Lecture Series, the UI Office of Sustainability, and the Drake Environmental Science and Policy Program.

As a reminder, here are "14 Reasons Why Key The Tar Sands Pipeline Is Bad For Iowa And Bad For America":

1. Oil from the tar sands is very energy-intensive to produce – 30-60% higher greenhouse gases than regular oil.

2. The pipeline would commit the world to using more tar sands, taking our atmosphere far beyond safe limits for greenhouse gases (350 parts per million carbon dioxide).

3. The pipeline would endanger the Ogallala Aquifer, the Sand Hills of Nebraska, and the Great Plains from oil spills.

4. The pipeline and the tar sands will ruin wetlands and other areas essential for North American waterfowl – it is bad for hunting and birding.

5. The pipeline would ruin the boreal forests of Canada – an important habitat and “carbon sink” that holds carbon dioxide that would otherwise go into the atmosphere.

6. The pipeline would continue the displacement of Native Americans and desecrate native lands - both here and in Canada.

7. The pipeline would require condemnation of thousands of American farms and ranches by a foreign oil company (TransCanada).

8. Canada cannot build a pipeline to its Pacific Coast, because of legal, technical, and practical barriers (including opposition from the First Nations and the threat to Canada's tourism industry and environment from a Pacific Coast refinery).

9.  The Keystone XL tar sands pipeline is being built for export on the global market from Port Arthur, Texas, and will bypass Midwest refineries, driving gas prices in Iowa even higher.

10. Even if built for the US market, the pipeline would worsen our dependence on expensive foreign oil.

11. Even if built for the US market, the pipeline would increase competition with Iowa's biofuels industry.

12.  The pipeline would cost billions of dollars that should be used for fuel efficiency, clean renewable energy, and other transportation solutions.

13. Any jobs that might be created by the pipeline are a few thousand temporary jobs, while alternatives would create more jobs and more permanent jobs.

14. The pipeline is unfair to future generations - our children and grandchildren should decide whether to burn the tar sands, not us.