Joe Nocera thinks that everyone protesting the Keystone pipeline is pretty silly. He makes a series of weak arguments, and I'll direct you to others to explain why the pipeline isn't about a U.S. geopolitical advantage, why the environmental cost of tar sands oil extraction isn't small just because Nocera says so, why activism is more important than wonky incrementalism, and why a carbon tax wouldn't make tar sands extraction more viable.
I'm more interested in Nocera's overall point: that we need to reduce demand for fossil fuels, not supply.
Recently I wrote about the tar sands pipeline blockaders who have been coming to our church in Nacogdoches, Texas. Life with these young people is never dull. We’re learning to improvise and be light on our feet with them around.
When news came out that Obama would get to
approve or block a pipeline linking Texas
refineries to the tar sands of Alberta, it was clear that it was time for
more than words.