President Donald Trump’s decision to move forward with the Keystone XL pipeline may ultimately backfire, as the State Department has estimated the pipeline will only create 35 permanent jobs after the one or two years’ worth of construction work has been completed.
According to Census.gov, the current population of the United States is over 316 million. Congratulations – this pipeline will have successfully created jobs for 0.000011 percent of the American population.
Republican supporters have long argued that the pipeline project will be a tremendous job creator. In 2012, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce took out a full-page ad in the New York Times warning Barack Obama not to say no to 20,000 jobs(the pipeline company’s estimate.)
The State Department’s recent estimate means the pipeline could bring in 42,100 jobs in total, but they would all be one-year only contracts. What happens to the 42,000 workers after that one year of construction? Do they build a new pipeline? This does not sound sustainable.
As noted by the Guardian, the proposed Keystone XL and Dakota Access pipelines will also create an enormity of blowback in other ways:
Beyond risking our energy economy on what we now call ‘alternative facts,’ these pipelines pose specific risks to Indian Country – and President Trump ignores those risks at his own political peril. Keystone XL would run on top of the Ogallala Aquifer, a vast multi-state underground reservoir that provides water to millions of Americans, including many Native American tribes, across the midwest. Part of the Dakota Access pipeline would run under Lake Oahe, a major water source for the Standing Rock Sioux tribe in North Dakota. Consultation with Native American tribes in the construction of both pipelines has been feeble.”
This is quite humorous given that publications such as the Guardian and other corporate media outlets refused to report on the protests happening at Standing Rock in its early stages. It wasn’t until many alternative media organizations began to break the story, forcing the issue on social media, that these news outlets were willing to take notice of the situation.
Now that it is Trump ramping up these proposals, however, the media is suddenly on the side of the people again.