When Donald J. Trump won the 2016 presidential election, he made history. He is the first non-career politician—a businessman, only—to take the office. Well, the historic president is now approving restarting construction of the Keystone XL oil pipeline. Indeed, on Friday, US President Donald Trump announced a “historic moment for North America,” by approving the project that had been long opposed by environmental groups, local landowners, and, of course, Native American tribes who hold the land sacred.
In true Trump fashion, the Commander-In-Chief goes on to say, “It’s gonna be an incredible pipeline — the greatest technology known to man or woman. And frankly, we’re very proud of it.”
In the Oval Office, Trump was joined by Energy Secretary Rick Perry as well as executives from TransCanada—the North American entity who wants to build the pipeline. He pledged that the pipeline project would bring new jobs to the country as well as reduce energy costs and, perhaps most importantly, reduce the country’s dependence on foreign oil.
At a rally on Monday, in Louisville, KY, Trump promised: “If people want to build pipelines in the United States, they should use American steel and they should build it and create it right here. That pipeline is going to be manufactured right here.”
You may be aware, of course, that previous president Barack Obama had listened to the pleas of the opposition and stopped the project on the grounds it could have an extremely negative impact on the environment at a time when climate change is already a controversial topic. Trump, however, signed an executive order—only days after taking office—to revive the $8 billion pipeline project, which was met with wide support from those invested.
When signing the executive order, Trump explained, “The regulatory process in this country has become a tangled up mess,” in January. At the time, he also signed an executive order to expedite approval of the far more heavily protested Dakota Access Pipeline.
Still, what may be good for the goose is probably not good for the gander (the “geese” in this case being investors and the “gander” in this case being just about everyone else). Natural Resources Defense Council president Rhea Suh comments, “Keystone XL is all risk and no reward for the American people. It remains, and always will be, a threat to our land, water and climate. Today’s decision can never change those facts.”