Publisher's Note: The other day, Sybele Capezzutti explained what might cause oil pipelines to leak. In today's second of two articles, she explains the bigger problem of why the Keystone and Dakota Pipelines are being thwarted every step of the way.
Sybele Capezzutti: Winston Churchill famously said “He who controls oil will win the next war”.
The black gold doesn’t only keep vehicles running and jets flying, it is also the raw material for paints, roof shingles, plastic products, nylon fabric, synthetic rubber (your Nikes), PVC pipes, artificial limbs, solid surface countertops, asphalt tar, frames for glasses, basically anything plastic like your phone case, computer keyboard, etc.
It is no wonder this thick gooey smelly product has become the reason for wars, toppling leaders of Nations and the rise of the environmental conscience, all funded by the ones who seek to control it.
Yes, I am putting environmentalists in the same category with heads of State who start wars!
If I wanted to control something as important as oil I wouldn’t try to do so by promoting wars, I would recruit an army of volunteers to fight against my enemies by infiltrating a few paid generals in the crowd to convince people that they are fighting for justice. Nothing is more convincing as a good cause. We humans tend to sacrifice it all to save what we consider to be defenseless, and what is more defenseless than the earth we live on?
Now, I am not in any way someone who doesn’t care about the environment. I do care, and I do want clean water and clean air. But I am also very well aware of how easy it is to take something good and use it to benefit the greed of a few…think about how some charities exploit our sensitivity to collect money that never benefits the cause they promote.
Once the group thinking is established, all you have to do is pick the target and say go! The environment can be used as the background for almost anything one wants to keep from happening or promote.
The United States has the largest network of energy pipelines in the world, with more than 2.4 million miles of pipe. The network of crude oil pipelines in the U.S. is extensive. There are approximately 72,000 miles of crude oil lines in the U.S. that connect regional markets. Clearly, oil spills are not a regular occurrence or we would be bathing in oil by now.
The XL pipeline will have 1,179 miles and the Dakota pipeline 1,134 miles. Considering the 2.4 million already in use, it is baffling that anyone has a problem with these two projects. So, common sense led me to believe that the environment was just a clever cover to fight for the interests of the elite seeking control.
Putin-allied Russian oil billionaires laundered $23 million through the Bermuda-based Wakefield Quin law firm to the Sea Change Foundation and then to anti-fracking and anti-Keystone groups, the Environmental Policy Alliance fund (which later became Bold Alliance).
Bold Alliance is an umbrella group which began by protesting the Keystone XL pipeline in Nebraska. It now has chapters in a total of four states–Nebraska, Iowa, Oklahoma, and Louisiana–and is a supporter of the Standing Rock protests in North Dakota. It claims to be a grassroots group fighting for the environment by opposing gas and oil pipelines.
Other groups created with the sole purpose to fight against oil and gas pipelines were “Honor the Earth”, and the “Indigenous Environmental Network”, both funded by Tides Foundation.
Tides is a donor advised fund that directs money to politically liberal causes, its combined cash flows exceed $200 million a year.
Paul Driessen, the author of Echo-Imperialism: Green – Black Death, explains in his book how backing makes the $13-billion-per-year U.S. environmentalist movement a power to be reckoned with. These tax-exempt foundations do not simply give money to pressure groups. They serve as puppeteers, telling protesters what campaigns to conduct, what tactics to use. Meanwhile, donors enjoy deductions for “charitable giving” to “education, conservation and other social change” programs.
One of Tides’ biggest donors is Warren Buffett who funneled 30.5 million through his family’s NoVo to Tides foundation and applied enough pressure in Washington to stall the Keystone Pipeline while Buffett bought the Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad and Union Tank Car manufacturing company. When Keystone was blocked, more oil was shipped by rail – much of it via Buffett companies. In fact, oil-by-rail skyrocketed from 9,500 carloads in 2009 to 450,000 carloads in 2014. After a derailment in Lac Megantic (Quebec) that caused a spill which destroyed most of the town and killed 47 people, Buffett criticized Obama for blocking the pipeline. One would almost think Buffett is a politician!
Then there were the Dakota pipeline protests! Who could forget that?
Even I, a skeptic, was moved by all the Native Americans fighting for their sacred land!
It was not until a friend who lives in the area told me we were all being fooled that I felt the need to look into it further, like millions of Americans my heart was hurting for our already marginalized Indigenous people.
To my surprise, most of the protestors were not even Native Americans. According to a CNN online report by Jessica Ravitz, protestors at Standing Rock were from all over the World including Japan, Germany, Serbia and Russia. She interviewed Fool Bear Sr., chairman of Cannon Ball who said he just wanted everyone to go away. Fool Bear said “if they could come from other planets I think they would”. Isn’t that strange? Why would foreigners take such interest in protesting a pipeline in the US? Remember who the first donors to the foundation that started it all were?
And why are Indigenous people protesting a pipeline that is not even going to cross sacred land? Yes, that’s right, the pipeline doesn’t cross Sioux land, even less sacred land. Fool Bear also said that more than two years ago, when members of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe could have attended hearings to make their concerns known, they didn't care.
Protesters claim that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers failed to consult tribal leaders as required by federal law. The record shows that the corps held 389 meetings with 55 tribes. Tribal leaders for Standing Rock Sioux ignored request for comments and cancelled meetings multiple times, but were the ones to initiate the law suit and protests.
Many alterations were made to the route to avoid environmentally or culturally sensitive areas. In North Dakota alone, 140 route adjustments were made to the pipeline during the planning process, including seventeen route adjustments to address concerns from involved parties.
The Dakota Access Pipeline does not cross any land belonging to the Standing Rock Sioux. The remaining area of construction, at Lake Oahe, is home to eight pipelines, including existing non-DAPL owned dual 42-inch pipelines which have been operating immediately parallel to the new route for over 30 years. The water inlet for the Standing Rock Sioux will be over 70 miles away from the location of the pipeline by early 2017. The pipeline will be buried 92 feet below the riverbed.
The conclusion on both pipelines, Keystone and Dakota, is that all precautions have been taken to cause the least environmental and human disturbance and the only tribe in Dakota upset with its construction is also the one who chose to not even participate on the permitting process.
What could have caused their sudden interest? Money perhaps…?! You decide.