LINKS Sept. 14, 2011


Detroit bridge owner gets Koch help [Bloomberg]

More secure passports coming next year [CP]

US federal prosecutors discuss northern border issues [WSJ]

Holder: Officers from US, Canada will work on cross-border investigations [AP]

Harper, Obama to give details of border security deal [Postmedia News]

Much good has come from tightened border security [Peace Arch News]


Ottawa says it will fight Buy American measures [Toronto Star]

US envoy says trade with Canada is top issue [AP]

Canadians anxious about Buy American provisions in Obama’s jobs bill [CP]

Geithner: Economy in an early stage of crisis [Real Clear Politics]

Obama declares ‘national emergency’ for jobs [Politico]

Strong Cdn dollar not only reason for shopping in US [CBC]

Weak job market has Canadians looking north [Postmedia News]

US media juggernaut still a threat to Canada [Troy Media News]

Cdn doctors still make dramatically less than US counterparts: study [National Post]


Doer says he won’t run for NDP leadership [Toronto Star]


Canada to extend Libya mission by 3 months [CTV]

Canadian companies will benefit from military intervention: Libyan official [Postmedia News]

NATO balks at Libya nation-building, policing [AP]


Oliver stumps for Keystone pipeline in California [CP]

Peter Lougheed opposes Keystone pipeline [CBC]

Yedlin: Lougheed comment sparks pipeline debate [Calgary Herald]

Oil patch steams ahead [Financial Post]

Tar-sands showdown [Wired]

10 reasons why the Keystone pipeline will be built [National Review]

Over 1,200 Keystone protesters arrested [Living on Earth]


LINKS Sept. 7, 2011


Border agent says there’s nothing to do, money is being wasted [CNN]

Canada dropped $92-billion on security post-9/11 [Postmedia News]

Canadian trucker admits smuggling cocaine from US [AP]

Tragedy forged new reality [CP]

Schumer calls on Feds to move ahead with joint border crossing []

Hampson: 9/11 and the Remaking of Canada []

Robertson: The border: The bygone days of ‘pass friend’ [Embassy mag]

After 9/11, border patrol doubles, fewer tourists cross border, more criminals caught [Detroit Free Press]

More Canadian manufacturers encountering difficulty as they try to cross into the US [NB Business Journal]

Georgia man stays in jail after border child porn bust [Winnipeg Sun]


Flaherty wants probe into ‘irritating’ US-Canada price gaps [Postmedia News]

How Canadians get access to US-only deals [Globe and Mail]

Is the US ready for Little Mosque on the Prairie [BBC]

Canadian dealers get ‘carve out’ from US regulations [Financial Post]


Lt. Gen. Bouchard assesses NATO’s mission in Libya [NPR]

Plan would keep small force in Iraq past deadline [NY Times]


Sen. Johannes, second prominent Nebraska Republican opposes Keystone pipeline [Des Moines Register]

Study: Tar sands oil will reach US sans pipeline [Forbes]

Oil sands need US workers: Alberta minister [Bloomberg]

Dalai Lama joins Keystone pipeline opponents [Calgary Sun]

McKibben: What comes next for oil sands action []

Nobel Laureates urge Obama to reject pipeline [Huffington Post]

Canada minister ‘increasingly optimistic’ about Keystone approval [Dow Jones]

Cdn ambassador confident pipeline will be approved for jobs [Postmedia News]

Oil-funded study: more drilling would add 1.4 million jobs [Reuters]

Are Canadians growing apathetic about the oil sands? [Huffington Post]

Keystone XL benefactor to send oil overseas [Michigan Messenger]

Letter to Oprah Winfrey on ‘ethical oil’ ads []



My interview with State official leading Keystone review

June 20, 2011

From my story in this week’s  Maclean’s magazine:

Managing this contentious process falls to the State Department’s Bureau of Oceans, International Environmental and Scientific Affairs, which deals with everything from polar issues and infectious diseases to whaling and fish. Handling the review is Clune, a veteran diplomat with short-cropped white hair who has a no-nonsense demeanour and the unwieldy title of principal deputy assistant secretary of state. A career diplomat rather than a political appointee, he served as deputy chief of mission in the U.S. Embassy in Canberra, Australia, and had stints in Peru and Indonesia.

In an interview in his State Department office, where he is flanked by a departmental lawyer and a media minder, Clune speaks with the carefully chosen words of someone who understands that every move surrounding the pipeline is likely to one day be scrutinized in court. Some environmental groups have said they will sue if the project is approved.

A central concern for the critics is whether the department can answer the EPA’s concerns and still reach a decision in time for the self-imposed end-of-the-year deadline. Clune says yes. “We still expect to make a decision on whether to issue the permit or not by the end of the year. With respect to the EPA’s comments, we’ve been working very closely with them as well as with other agencies to analyze the environmental impacts of the proposed pipeline, and look forward to working with them on issues described in the letter.”

Asked what criteria will be used to assess the “national interest,” Clune is careful to refer to criteria that have been used in past reviews. “They include environmental impacts, the impact of the proposed project on diversity of supply to U.S. crude oil demand, security of transport pathways, the stability of trading partners from whom the U.S. obtains crude oil, the cross-border facility on relations with the country with which it connects,” says Clune. And how will those factors be balanced? “There is no mathematical formula where you plug in numbers and an answer spits out,” he says. “We will present a full record of all the facts we have gathered in this process to the decision-maker and it will be up to the decision-maker to weigh the various factors.”

Of course, how those facts are presented will matter a great deal. For example, does the State Department assume, as do backers of the pipeline, that if it is not built, Canadian oil sands product will be developed anyway and simply shipped to China?…

Read full story here.


On Twitter at luizachsavage


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