For years, radical environmentalists have been against the Keystone pipeline, because it would transport oil from Canadian, Tar Sands where, they claim, more CO2 is emitted during the production of oil than from traditional methods.
They have been against fracking, which has produced more jobs than any other segment of the economy over the past few years, and which has provided some stimulus to an otherwise very sluggish economy.
Again, they oppose fracking, and natural gas in general, because it is a so-called, green house gas.
Fracking has created an opportunity for the United States to counter Russian aggression, yet these same environmentalists oppose building LNG export terminals.
It seems that at every turn, radical environmentalists take actions that are detrimental to America.
A group of 16 radical environmental leaders have signed a letter to Obama saying that the Cove Point, LNG export terminal should be delayed, while extensive, time consuming new environmental impact statements are prepared … essentially the same tactic being used against the Keystone pipeline1.
We have just witnessed a ham-handed takeover of the Crimea by Russia.
We should have learned during the last century that appeasement induces more heavy handed actions by dictators.
Obviously, there is no desire to put boots on the ground in Eastern Europe, especially when the EU itself is squeamish about taking action against Russia. Remember, the EU couldn’t even take action in Yugoslavia, and it required the United States, under the guise of NATO, to take forceful action in Kosovo and Sarajevo.
But the United States has a powerful economic weapon, that can help defuse Russian aggression … its LNG from fracking.
Look at the hapless Baltic States, long sufferers under the Soviet Union, who now receive 100% of their natural gas from Russia.
Imagine what it would mean to them if an LNG import terminal was built in Riga, Latvia, essentially the midpoint between Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania.
Fracked natural gas from the United States would upend the Russian monopoly, along with the practice of fixing the price of natural gas to the price of oil … Russia’s method for extracting an extra pound of flesh from its export of Russian natural gas.
On my trip to the Baltic States a few years ago, we heard government officials tell of their travails under the heel of the Russian boot. Repeatedly I heard them say, the Germans were terrible, but the Russians were worse.
We also heard from Lech Walesa in Gdansk , Poland about his struggles against Russian tanks and the Polish communist government.
Now we have the three Baltic States, and also Poland, and other Eastern European countries, recoiling against new Russian aggression.
Our best strategy is to use economic pressure, not boots on the ground, and natural gas is a powerful economic weapon.
- List of 16 organizations signing letter to Obama:
- Bill McKibben, 350.org co-founder and President
- Marc Yaggi, Waterkeeper Alliance Executive Director
- Sierra Club Executive Director Michael Brune
- William Snape, senior counsel, Center for Biological Diversity
- Lois Marie Gibbs, executive director, Center for Health, Environment and Justice
- Mike Tidwell, executive director, Chesapeake Climate Action Network
- Becky Bond, political director, CREDO Mobile
- Kathleen Rogers, director, Earth Day Network
- Deborah Goldberg, managing attorney, Earthjustice
- Jennifer Krill, executive director, Earthworks
- Maura Cowley, director, Energy Action Coalition
- Jesse Bacon, field organizer, Environmental Action
- Margie Alt, executive director, Environment America
- Wenonah Hauter, executive director, Food and Water Watch
- Erich Pica, president, Friends of the Earth
- Fran Teplitz, policy director, Green America
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