Ten Nobel Peace Laureates, including Jody Williams and Archbishop Desmond Tutu, renewed their call to President Obama and Secretary Kerry to reject the Keystone XL pipeline as a deadline for the decision draws closer. A three-quarter page ad of the Laureates’ June 18 open letter to both United States policymakers appears in Tuesday’s A-section of the Washington Post.
In the letter, the Laureates remind both government officials that:
“Climate change threatens all of us, but it is the world’s most vulnerable who are already paying for developed countries’ failure to act with their lives and livelihoods. This will only become more tragic as impacts become worse and conflicts are exacerbated as precious natural resources, like water and food, become more and more scarce. Inaction will cost hundreds of millions of lives—and the death toll will only continue to rise.”
Since the letter sent in June, the debate on the Keystone XL pipeline continues, as a decision on its status nears. President Obama gave a speech on his administration’s policy towards climate change, indicating that he will approve the pipeline only if it is determined that “it will not increase climate pollution.” Activists, academics, and First Nations elders in communities impacted by oil sands have consistently established the link between climate destruction and the Keystone XL. Despite this, Obama has delayed his decision yet again.
In Canada, this year’s healing walk, a ceremony in which first nations communities and activists come together to bear witness to environmental destruction associated with oil sands development, was a resounding success. The community was joined by hundreds of activists from around the world, who called on the Canadian government to reconsider harmful developments in Alberta. The Laureates hope that the collective pressure of grassroots community activists and influential public figures will finally convince the President and Secretary of State to stop the pipeline once and for all.
President Obama is talking big on climate change, but will he act? , The Guardian, June 25, 2013.
Nobel Peace Laureates call on Obama and Kerry to reject Keystone XL pipeline, Nobel Women’s Initiative, June 18, 2013.
What I learned at the 4th annual Healing Walk, Huffington Post, July 12, 2013.
Tell President Obama to reject the Keystone Pipeline, stoptar.org
Sign a letter to President Obama, calling on him to reject the Keystone XL pipeline.