Disputed report says terrorists could target Keystone XL

Retired Navy SEAL's threat assessment finds an attack on the pipeline could cause a "catastrophic" oil spill.
By Daniel J. Graeber Follow @dan_graeber Contact the Author   |   Updated June 5, 2014 at 8:40 AM
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WASHINGTON, June 5 (UPI) -- Terrorists in a hypothetical attack on the planned Keystone XL oil pipeline could cause a "catastrophic" oil spill, a retired Navy SEAL said in a report.

Dave Cooper, a former member of SEAL Team 6, which hunted down al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden in 2011, was contracted to provide a threat assessment of the planned pipeline for NextGen Climate, led by a vocal Keystone XL opponent, billionaire Tom Steyer.

Portions of the report, obtained Wednesday in a redacted form by several media outlets, said Keystone is a ripe target for terrorists.

"A handful of terrorists could use just four pounds of explosives at each of the three pump facilities located [redacted] to cause explosions that could trigger a catastrophic spill."

Shawn Howard, a spokesman for Keystone XL planner TransCanada, told Huffington Post safety was a top priority for the pipeline.

Steyer, a former hedge fund manager, has pledged to help tip the scales in favor of Democrats who have made climate change a priority issue through funding from his climate change-focused SuperPAC NextGen Climate Action.

Keystone XL, which would cross the U.S.-Canadian border, needs a permit from the U.S. government before construction can begin.

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