Letter To The Editor: Keystone XL

By Ben Garber | January 2012, Vol. 67 No. 1

In reading your excellent editorial on the above subject, it stirred my memory back to the 50s when I, as a young pipeliner, was in Alaska Territory, involved in the building of an eight-inch fuel line from Haines to Fairbanks.

The 830-mile project was to supplement the original Canol three-inch fuel line built in the 40s that supplied fuel to Fairbanks and the U.S. military from Canada. The eight-inch line had to pass through the Yukon, Canadian territory, to get from the port of Haines to Fairbanks.

It is amazing how short memories are in Washington, DC, depending on circumstances. Both of these earlier lines were conceived, supplied and built in less time than the Keystone FEIS took. Of course, the motivation for the earlier lines came from us, rather than the Canadians. We seem to forget that the Canadians were helping us back then, to allow us to cross the Yukon Territory with our eight-inch pipeline, and to allow the earlier three-inch line to originate in their territory, proceed north and carry fuel in a time of emergency.

So, Keystone is certainly not anything new in terms of crossing borders between us, only who originated the request. Those of us down here in the U.S. would certainly benefit from a closer, more reliable source to obtain our crude oil from in the future.

Sincerely,
Ben Garber
Lake Charles, LA