Keystone XL Pipeline Will Increase North American Gas Prices, Study Finds

"The Real Solutions are Cutting Oil Use and Increasing Fuel Efficiency," says the NRDC
Thursday Nov 22, 2012

Canada: Tzeporah Berman, ForestEthics Advocacy 604-313-4713  
United States: Bob Keefe, NRDC

VANCOUVER -- North American drivers will face higher gasoline prices if the Keystone XL Tar Sands pipeline from Canada to the Gulf of Mexico were built, according to a new analysis by the Natural Resources Defense Council, Oil Change International and ForestEthics Advocacy.

That finding adds to the long list of reasons why the proposed pipeline should not be built, said the study, released today.

“Industry and the Harper government are attempting to mislead the public into thinking these pipelines benefit consumers.  The primary benefits are substantial profits to big oil while consumers are left with the risks of oils spills, clean up costs and higher gas prices.” said Tzeporah Berman, co-founder of ForestEthics.

"The pipeline’s proponents say it’s the solution to high gas prices and ‘land-locked’ Canadian oil. The truth is exactly the opposite —the pipeline would raise gas prices," said Anthony Swift, NRDC attorney. "In addition our study shows that there is currently enough pipeline capacity for almost double what Canada currently exports."

If built, the Keystone XL pipeline daily would transport up to 830,000 barrels of the world’s dirtiest oil through America’s heartlands and breadbasket—diverting oil from Midwestern refineries, which now produce more gasoline per barrel than any other region in the United States. 

The proposed pipeline would turbo-charge U.S. gas prices by increasing the prices that Midwestern refineries pay for crude oil—a fact that TransCanada, the company seeking to build the pipeline, has confirmed.

Today, Midwestern refineries buy crude oil at deep discounts, allowing them to produce gasoline far more cheaply than they could otherwise. Keystone XL would change that, the study said.

 “The oil industry is increasingly looking to lucrative international diesel markets to increase its profits,” said Lorne Stockman, research director at Oil Change International, “Keystone XL sends tar sands to refineries that are primarily configured to produce diesel for export - and that means less gasoline for North American consumers. “

The report’s findings echo a similar study by economist Robyn Allen that showed that the Enbridge Northern Gateway Proposal would increase gas prices in Canada. 

The entire report can be found here:


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