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TransCanada’s Keystone pipeline, which proposes carrying Canadian tar-sands oil to Texas, is slated for installation soon across eastern McLean County. President Obama must soon decide whether to permit it to cross the Ogallala aquifer supplying several Western states.

Keystone’s reputation makes this a major threat. It is frightening.

In Canada, as reported recently in Public Citizen, a Keystone whistle-blower testified to Canada’s senate that Keystone scornfully “ignore[s] legally required regulations.”

North Dakota protesters who crawled inside pipes to delay installation noticed “slivers of light peeking through from the outside.” Regardless, the pipes were installed. In May 2011, a North Dakota Keystone “pipeline sprayed 500 barrels of crude oil 50 feet into the air.”

States in the North Dakota area experienced 12 leaks in the first year — the most in U.S. history. Even worse, tar-sands crude is often impossible to clean up — far worse than ordinary crude oil.

A Texas rancher recently told of 60 miles of Keystone pipeline on his property. A few months after installation, workers returned to excavate and “fix” over 30 “problems.” There were wooden stakes marked “dent” or “anomaly” and pipe sections marked “dent removed” on the ground.

The company’s spill-detector is not only outdated, it is set to trigger only if the pipeline is spilling more than 12,000 barrels a day!

This is a very dangerous threat to our water supply.

Do we want Keystone, with this reputation, crossing three major water sources in McLean County? Or, for that matter, crossing 1,900 mid-American waterways?

Emphatically, no.

Barbara F. Stuart

Norma

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