Keystone XL protest planned in Nebraska

July 26, 2013 at 6:54 AM

LINCOLN, Neb., July 26 (UPI) -- Keystone XL pipeline opponent Bold Nebraska called for demonstrations Saturday in the state capital for what's billed as a rally in support of green issues.

Bold Nebraska called for a demonstration Saturday in Lincoln to rally support for a climate agenda outlined by President Obama in his State of the Union address in January. Obama called for a general fight against climate change, saying later he'd weigh the Keystone XL oil pipeline against its environmental footprint.

Pipeline planner TransCanada needs a presidential permit to build the cross-border section of Keystone XL, which would facilitate the delivery of tar sands oil to refineries in the United States.

Supporters of the pipeline say it would ensure North American energy independence and serve as a source of economic stimulus. Detractors say tar sands oil is too carbon intensive and prone to spills.

Bold Nebraska said Thursday it was circulating a petition to Obama to stop the pipeline. The advocacy group said the project's planned route still runs through sensitive ecosystems in Nebraska despite revisions made last year by TransCanada.

TransCanada says safety is its top priority and describes negative environmental assessments of the pipeline as off the mark.

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