News that President Obama was calling for expedited construction of the southern portion of the Keystone XL pipeline from Cushing, Okla. to the Gulf Coast triggered criticism from supporters of the pipeline, including the American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers (AFPM).
Earlier this year, Obama deferred the building of a pipeline from Canada's tar sands to the Gulf Coast through environmentally sensitive parts of the Midwest. Last week he said his administration would expedite construction of the southern part of the route, Christi Parsons and Neela Banerjee reported in March 22 issue of The Los Angeles Times.
Refiners said that would do nothing to improve supply.
“Construction of a portion of the Keystone XL pipeline from Cushing, Oklahoma to Gulf Coast refineries is needed to speed the movement of oil already in the United States and relieve a bottleneck in Cushing, but will do absolutely nothing to give American consumers access to a vital and reliable supply of nearly 1 million barrels of oil a day from North Dakota, Montana and our good friend and neighbor Canada,” AFPM President Charles T. Drevna said in a statement.
The AFPM, formerly known as NPRA, the National Petrochemical & Refiners Association, is a trade association representing U.S. producers of gasoline, diesel, jet fuel, other fuels and home heating oil.
“After more than three years of waging war on fossil fuels, it’s long past time for President Obama to declare a cease-fire and approve construction of the entire Keystone XL pipeline to serve American consumers,” Drevna said. “He doesn’t need to travel across the country for an elaborately staged and costly media event to do this – he can do it immediately with the stroke of a pen.”
Drevna added: “The U.S. Energy Information Administration says the cost of crude oil accounts for 76 cents of every dollar that American consumers pay for gasoline. The best way to put downward pressure on oil prices is to increase the oil supply in the United States by producing more oil in our own country and by bringing more oil to U.S. refineries from Canada, North Dakota and Montana. Doing this would benefit American consumers, create tens of thousands of jobs for American workers, and strengthen our economic and national security by making us less reliant on unstable regions of the world for oil needed to manufacture gasoline, diesel fuel, home heating oil and other critically important products.”