The US government report that minimized pipeline environmental impact was drafted by consultants who also work for TransCanada and the American Petroleum Institute.
by Michael Marx
Michael Marx is Director of the Sierra Club‘s. Beyond Oil Campaign
(August 5, 2013) Last Friday the State Department’s Office of the Inspector General confirmed that it will investigate evidence that the agency violated ethics guidelines when it hired an oil industry consultant to draft the Keystone XL environmental impact statement This evidence adds to the growing criticism that the State Department’s conclusion, which minimizes the Keystone XL’s profound impact on U.S. carbon pollution, is based on a faulty and biased review. In fact, the tar sands pipeline is a climate disaster waiting to happen.
In April (PDF), and again in July (PDF), the Sierra Club and partner groups presented evidence of ethics violations by State and their consultant, ERM. We requested that the Office of the Inspector General investigate how and why the State Department hired ERM despite the company’s close ties to TransCanada, the company behind the pipeline proposal, and to the American Petroleum Institute, the industry lobbying group that is leading PR efforts to promote the pipeline and an organization of which ERM is a dues-paying member.