Or at least, the EU doesn't
Oil from controversial and environmentally destructive tar sands is likely to be all but banned from Europe after a decision on Tuesday. The move also casts doubt on the future of other controversial energy sources such as shale gas.
In a victory for Connie Hedegaard, the EU's climate change commissioner, the commission has decided to back a new directive on fuel quality. This will set minimum environmental standards for a range of fuels, including tar sands, coal converted to liquid and oil from shale rock.
Hedegaard said: "With this measure, we are sending a clear signal to fossil fuels suppliers. As fossil fuels will be a reality in the foreseeable future, it's important to give them the right value.''
...The proposals have now been sent to EU member states who will meet in four to six weeks to vote on the proposal. It will then go to the European parliament for final approval.
...The commission has proposed that tar sands be ascribed a greenhouse gas value of 107 grams per megajoule of fuel – this compares with 87.5 grams per megajoule for ordinary crude oil, on average. Producers will also have to cut the carbon footprint of their fuels by 6% in the next decade.
Now, if we can just remove the incentive to keep it on any markets...but needless to say, this is very good news and another jolt of momentum against building the Keystone XL pipeline. It came very conveniently on the heels of the wethepeople.gov petition reaching the 5,000-signature threshold to get the administration's attention.
It also coincides with the public comment period, which runs through October 9th. You can leave a comment about it by clicking here
. You can also write letters to the editor, especially if you are in one of the six states actually hosting the pipeline. If you are, please also call your Governor with a resounding "No!"
Oh, and if you happen to live in the D.C. area, there is a public meeting this Friday you can attend:
Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center
1300 Pennsylvania Avenue
Washington, District of Columbia 20004
10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.