Environmentally, so much has happened this week… I don’t know where to start.
We all know by now, Donald Trump has a vested interest in the oil industry. He has his reasons for giving the go ahead to pipeline companies like Trans Canada and Energy Transfer, and despite what he says, the 100 or so full time jobs these pipelines will create are not in the equation.
With regards to Energy Transfer Partners, the company that owns the Dakota Pipeline, Trump is said to have between $500,000 and $1 million invested, and he has another $500,000 to $1 million holding in Phillips 66, which means he would have a 25 percent stake in that completed pipeline.
His relationship with former Exxon Mobil CEO Rex Tillerson, who he appointed to the position of Secretary of State, is built on a slippery foundation of fossil fuel and an oil deal between Exxon Mobile and Russia’s oil company Rosneft. It’s a tangled web that might be confirmed if Trump released his taxes—don’t hold your breath on that.
Donald Trump’s new budget will cut funding to the Environmental Protection Agency, and as such, the department that enforces regulations that protect the environment will be left without the resources to police corporations like Trans Canada and Energy Transfer Partners…how convenient.
**U.S. District Judge James Boasberg decided any information regarding pipeline spill risks could be kept from the public. Boasberg said in his ruling: “The asserted interest in limiting intentionally inflicted harm outweighs the tribes’ generalized interests in public disclosure and scrutiny.” So, he claims to have made this decision to prevent vandalism by peaceful protesters. Hmm.
Anyone who believes Energy Transfer Partners, or Trans Canada, will responsibly put public and environmental interests ahead of their own financial gain is naïve.
Pipeline spills in North Dakota alone happen at an average of four spills per year, since 1996, at an average cost of more than $40 million in property damage. Damage to the environment however may not be reparable.
*Also this week:
*Texas Governor Greg Abbott has appointed a new man to lead the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission. You’ll never guess…The CEO of Energy Transfer Partners—of Dakota Access Pipeline fame, Billionaire Kelcy Warren himself is the new man for the job.
Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission’s stated mission:
Manage and conserve the natural and cultural resources of Texas and ensure present and future generations have access to hunting, fishing, and outdoor recreation opportunities.
He’ll be glad to get right on that I’m sure. A long career in the fossil fuel business is as good experience as any for that job, wouldn’t you say?
~Energy Transfer Partners — has spilled drilling fluid into two pristine Ohio wetlands this month, according to information reported to the Ohio EPA.
All this damage to the environment is happening, not to increase domestic supply of oil, but to transport oil from Canada to Mexico for the monetary gain of a handful of billionaires who all seem to have recently been put in positions where they can ensure the public has no recourse to their actions.
~~If all that wasn’t enough damage for one week:
~~Consider Trump’s latest executive order which allows Arctic and Atlantic drilling. Trump proved he can sign his name while speaking, saying: “Our Country is blessed with incredible natural resources, including abundant offshore oil and natural gas reserves, but the federal government has kept 94% of these offshore area is closed for exploration and production.” That’s a lot of potential income for Trump and his cronies.
This has been a good week for The Man, but a bad week for Planet Earth. It makes me wonder what these billionaires will do when they’ve siphoned this planet dry…could there be oil on Mars, and how would that type of pipeline work?