Monday, April 25, 2011

Gov. Heineman still doing nothing to protect Ogallala aquifer from environmental catastrophe in the making

Joe Jordan at Nebraska Watchdog takes note of Nebraska Republican governor Dave Heineman's continuing lack of action to prevent a new pipeline for extremely corrosive shale oil from being built directly over the porous soil in the biggest part of the Ogallala aquifer, which supplies water to Nebraska's two largest cities.
Dave Heineman with Sarah Palin
     In fact, Heineman has dishonestly been running interference for those who won't reroute the pipeline away from its risky, proposed location.
     Heinemen preposterously claimed, in an exclusive on camera interview to Nebraska Watchdog, that “It’s very difficult for the Governor to issue an executive order that says stop (the pipeline).”
     A six-page memo from the Congressional Research Service (CRS) says otherwise:
“The federal government does not have siting authority for oil pipelines, even interstate pipelines…state law establishes the primary siting authority for oil pipelines, including interstate oil pipelines.”
     If you wish to contact Gov. Heineman regarding his environmental recklessness, you may do so here.

A commenter from Lincoln laid out the stakes starkly in a posting about the story at Nebraska Watchdog:
WHEN, not if, the pipeline leaks 500,000 gallons of toxic Tar Sand Crude directly into the Ogallala Aquifer (the first Keystone has leaked seven times since beginning operation ten months ago) because it will take TransCanada a week to find the leak, and entire towns and counties no longer can use their drinking water wells, nor ranchers and farmers are able to water livestock or irrigate because of contaminated water, THEN it will be obvious to everyone that our lawmakers from the Governor and AG down to State Senators, were bought and paid for very cheaply by TransCanada and the Koch Brothers.
     Follow the money, you idiots! Who benefits to the tune of Billion$ if the pipeline is completed? The Koch Brothers who own tens of thousands of square miles of Alberta boreal forest overlying Tar Sand deposits that are being clear cut by their Georgia Pacific subsidiary, so their mining subsidiary can strip mine the Tar Sands and process it for transport via TransCanada to Koch owned refineries on the Texas Gulf Coast for EXPORT to China and Japan, NOT use in the U.S. (per the State Department)!
     The Governor and AG have already been caught with illegal campaign contributions from TransCanada in their coffers, and only returned it when their “mistake” was publicly disclosed (c’mon, people, where’s your outrage at crooked politicians?). Look at the other money trail and you’ll know why all those State Senators sit on their hands and do nothing, including those who’s constituents WILL be negatively affected by either the construction or subsequent leaking of the Keystone XL Pipeline on their lands and into municipal well fields. Here it is plain and simple:
     Koch Brothers => David Koch => Founder and main contributor of tens of millions of dollars to Americans For Prosperity (Koch Prosperity only, not the average citizen, er, peon’s) => AFP, main financial supporter of the Tea Party => AFP and Tea Party money donations and Tea Party “volunteer” workers support key State Senators in their campaigns, making those Senators beholden to Koch $$ => Langemeier, Fisher, et al sit on their hands and sell out the PEOPLE of Nebraska for their thirty pieces of Silver from the Koch Brothers.
   You think the ground water problems from the old Grand Island Ammunition Plant (contamination from the plant has migrated UNDER Grand Island and has made drinking water wells on the other side of town undrinkable) is bad? Or the contamination plume from the Mead Rocket Motor assembly site that has now migrated half way to the Lincoln Well Field is bad??? WHEN the Keystone XL leaks DIRECTLY into the Ogallala Aquifer and thousands of acres of land can no longer be used for grazing or crops and entire towns MUST have their drinking water bottled and shipped in, it will be TOO LATE to do anything about the situation. You think TransCanada will supply the drinking or agricultural water to remediate the situation? WRONG! Think again! Currently there is NOT one single law on the books in Nebraska that would make TransCanada pay one cent in remediating ANY of the environmental or economic damages caused by a leak in the Keystone XL!     Our state can take the example set by Montana, Montana of all states, whose State Legislature ARE addressing such concerns, including regulating construction materials of the pipeline itself, remediations, siting, etc, to protect the PEOPLE of Montana. Our elected leader are just content to throw us all under the bus for nothing more that personal power, gain and ego. How pathetic.

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