Saturday, December 30, 2017

What do leftists really care about? Stopping economic growth and energy independence of the U.S.

The North Dakota Access Pipeline was approved for construction on private land. The land, however, was the site of tribal sacred places under a treaty that was not observed in the 19th century. It is critical for U.S. energy independence and thousands of jobs in many states. So of course, the left opposed it. The Obama administration jumped in the fray in December 2016 after Trump was elected to stop the North Dakota Pipe Line becoming operational. All the required studies had been done, court cases settled and approvals received. Immediately after taking office, President Trump moved it ahead, it was operational in June and in September he visited the site. Another success for the President for making America great again and protecting the country from being held hostage by cheap middle east oil countries.

“The Dakota Access Pipeline Project connects the Bakken oil fields in North Dakota to Illinois with a pipeline stretching approximately 1,172 miles. According to the lobbying group Midwest Alliance for Infrastructure Now, the new conduit is supposed to be "among the safest, most technologically advanced pipelines in the world." The main supporters are Energy Transfer Partners and Sunoco Logistics, two large companies that primarily focus on similar pipeline projects. Constructing a functional pipeline over this many miles is a very costly endeavor, and the major banks and financial corporations underwriting the financing include Barclays, Wells Fargo, and Citibank. In total, Energy Transfer Partners has received $3.75 billion and Sunoco Logistics $2.5 billion in financial support from these and other major banks. In addition to those sums, Energy Transfer Equity, a Fortune 500 company and sister partnership to Energy Transfer Partners, has a credit line with another $1.5 billion in commitments from international banks. According to the nonprofit Food & Water Watch, in total, “there is $10.25 billion in loans and credit facilities from 38 banks directly supporting the companies building the pipeline.” All of them presumably hope to be paid back from the profits generated by the pipeline.

This pipeline will have a drastic impact on the economy. More domestic oil will be produced, making the United States less reliant on international markets; and many jobs could potentially be created. The pipeline is projected to carry half of the Bakken daily oil production – approximately 470,000 barrels per day with a capacity as high as 570,000 barrels per day or more. Sunoco Logistics envisions an expansion of the Bakken oil fields production not only to supply multiple markets throughout the United States, including in the Midwest and on the East Coast, but along the Gulf Coast as well through a Sunoco crude oil terminal facility in Texas. American oil exports will rise as imports fall, ultimately creating an economic benefit. In addition, the pipeline will generate an estimated $156 million in sales and income tax payments to state and local governments and add some 8,000 to 12,000 construction jobs throughout the United States.”

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