Revoking Keystone XL Pipeline Presidential Permit Would Be Bad For Wisconsin
To the Honorable: Sen. Tammy Baldwin, Sen. Ron Johnson, Rep. Bryan Steil, Rep. Mark Pocan, Rep. Ron Kind, Rep. Gwen Moore, Rep. Scott Fitzgerald, Rep. Glenn Grothman, Rep. Tom Tiffany, Rep. Mike Gallagher
The Wisconsin Building Trades Council (WBTC) represents the interests of 40,000 working men and women in Wisconsin. WBTC understands that balancing energy security and independence with the need for better national environmental policy is a struggle for our elected officials. However, the Keystone XL Pipeline Project (Keystone Project) will be good for the Wisconsin economy, will improve United States’ energy security and independence, and comes with significant green energy offsets. WBTC asks you to contact President-elect Biden and encourage him not to revoke the Presidential Permit for the Keystone Project.
Wisconsin is home to two of the nation’s preeminent pipeline construction companies, both of which will be constructing portions of the Keystone Project. These Wisconsin companies have already begun work on the Keystone Project. Nearly 2,000 men and women of the Wisconsin construction trades are, or will soon be, employed on the Keystone Project. Employment in the oil and gas pipeline construction industry is down over 20 percent since January 2020. The Keystone Project will help Wisconsin families recover from the economic impacts of the COVID-19 crises. Revocation of the Presidential Permit will result in many of these 2,000 working men and women losing their jobs. Wisconsin’s public safety nets, such as unemployment, will be further strained.
The economic benefits extend far beyond the 2,000 Wisconsinites working on the Keystone Project. Indigenous community partnerships, including equity ownership in the Keystone Project, are allowing the realization of long-term, meaningful economic benefits for indigenous communities in Canada and the United States. Additionally, nearly $150 million of steel pipe manufactured in the United States was ordered for the Keystone Project in 2020.
The Keystone Project offers the United States a unique opportunity to secure a reliable, long-term supply of oil from one of our closest allies, Canada. While renewable energy development has made progress, the reality is that we will continue to need crude oil in the United States for the foreseeable future. We should do everything we can to source crude oil from Canada and less from Venezuela, Nigeria, and even Mexico, where environmental and labor standards are woefully inadequate.
The owner of the Keystone Project, TC Energy, has committed to important green energy investments and standards that will not be realized if the Keystone Project does not proceed. TC Energy will invest more than $1.5 billion dollars for roughly 1,600 megawatts of new green energy power for its operations so that the Keystone Project will achieve Net Zero emissions. TC Energy has also committed to investing $10 million in a Green Jobs Training Fund to help train workers for jobs on a growing number of renewable energy projects. These substantial green energy advancements will not be realized if the Keystone Project does not proceed.
In closing, the WBTC and its 40,000 members ask that you help have their voices heard both in Congress and with the incoming Biden-Harris administration. Revocation of the Presidential Permit will have immediate, negative impacts for Wisconsin working families, the nation’s economic recovery, energy security and independence, and green energy advancements.