Goodnight Gaia by Ed Ciaccio + Stop the Keystone XL Pipeline + State Department’s Fact Sheet

by Ed Ciaccio
Writer, Dandelion Salad
January 31, 2014

Stop Keystone XL

Image by chesapeakeclimate via Flickr

(to the music of “Goodnight Saigon” by Billy Joel)

We entered crying
From mothers’ safe wombs.
We struggled daily
To keep from our tombs.
And we learned fast
That life was tough,
So we were determined
To make it enough.

They lived in comfort,
So golden-spoon fed.
Their parents taught them
That they were blessed,
And life was play,
Each day a game,
Where someone poorer
Was always to blame.

We lived in two worlds,
Linked by our labor.
Their wealth and riches
Came from our labor,
And from earth’s store,
Its finite store.
And we lived each day believing,
And so self-deceiving,
That there would always be more.

So we will all go down, together.
Yes we will all go down, together.
And we will all go down, together.

Remember Egypt,
And Greece and then Rome,
And Spain and England,
And closer to home,
The “Great” U.S.,
Modern empire,
Believing it will never, ever expire.

The arrogance taught
In U.S. culture:
Breeds human vultures.
And we are fools,
Believing lies,
Whenever we fail
We’re always surprised.

Burning fossil fuels
That increase
Gaia’s heat,
We ignore the threat
From our greed
That just dooms
All of earth’s species.

All that is living,
Are endangered,
There’s no forgiving,
But we go on,
Still wanting more,
As species die off, and seas rise,
Earth’s temperatures reach new highs,
“Game’s over” but we choose to ignore.

So we will all go down, together.
Yes we will all go down, together.
And we will all go down, together.

Ed Ciaccio’s first book, Heartlines: Selected Personal Works 1966-2011, is now available at or


[DS added the Action Alerts and Fact Sheet.]

Take Action!

Stop the Tar Sands Pipeline!

January 31, 2014

President Obama: The Keystone XL is not in our national interest
The State Department has issued its final environmental review, confirming that the Keystone XL pipeline could accelerate climate change. Tell President Obama to keep his promise by rejecting the climate-wrecking pipeline and moving us toward a clean energy future instead.



Earth’s Future in the Friday News Dump
January 31, 2014

It’s classic. Wait till late on a Friday to announce a reprehensible decision in hopes of minimizing the uproar in response. But the extreme climate crisis doesn’t take weekends off. And neither do we.

A State Department report has just declared that the environmental impact of the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline would be acceptable. This clears a path for Secretary of State John Kerry to give his approval to the pipeline.

Tell Kerry and President Obama we will not stand for this project moving forward:

Scientists agree with the assessment of James Hansen that exploitation of the tar sands would be a catastrophe for the climate. The State Department report that has just declared the environmental impact of the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline would be acceptable does not have our respect, and should provide no justification for approving the dangerous and destructive Keystone XL pipeline.



BREAKING: The final battle against Keystone XL starts now

Credo Action
January 31, 2014

Today the State Department released its final report on the environmental impact of the Keystone XL pipeline.

The headlines in the mainstream media faithfully repeated the oil industry’s spin. It’s true that the oil industry lobbyists did everything they could to sway this report to their liking – and we’re going to have to fight hard in the coming months to overcome their influence.

But the real news is that this report – despite being written by a deeply compromised contractor that was practically handpicked by TransCanada and the American Petroleum Institute – still couldn’t refute one crucial fact.

The State Department admitted that “the total direct and indirect emissions associated with the proposed Project would contribute to cumulative global GHG emissions.” And this is all the president needs in order to know that Keystone XL fails his climate test.1

Urge President Obama to reject Keystone XL.

Despite this admission, the report is still deeply flawed, and it makes it more obvious than ever just how desperate the oil industry is to force approval of Keystone XL – and how successful it has been so far at corrupting the State Department’s environmental review process.

Unfortunately for TransCanada and the toxic tar sands industry, two things remain true: This pipeline is President Obama’s decision – not theirs. And, Keystone XL fails the president’s climate test. There is simply no question it “significantly exacerbates carbon pollution.”

With the release of the State Department’s Final Environmental Impact Statement (or FEIS) we are finally in a sprint to the finish in our fight to stop Keystone XL. It kicks off the State Department’s 90 day National Interest Determination – a process involving other agencies, that should be more difficult for the oil industry to corrupt, and will allow Secretary Kerry to step in and show climate leadership.

Then, the final decision will be solely in the hands of the President. It is a decision that has wide implications for his presidency, and the progress we can make fighting climate change. He will have to decide which side he is on: Will he do what’s best for big oil or will he do what’s clearly in our national interest and reject this pipeline.

President Obama’s decision on Keystone XL will come down to the pressure we put on him in the next three months. Take action now to tell him once and for all to reject the “game over for the climate” pipeline.

It is also simply astonishing that this environmental analysis was released before an upcoming report from the State Department Inspector General to determine if conflict of interest rules were broken. We will be waiting eagerly for this investigation to be made public.

The next few months will offer Secretary of State John Kerry an opportunity to step up and be a leader for the climate during the National Interest Determination process, when he will make an official recommendation to the president.

But in the end, this is all about President Obama. And in the next few months, we’ll be ramping up direct citizen pressure on him to ensure he makes the right call.

We’re starting next week, organizing KXL protest vigils across the country. These are a crucial opportunity to speak out, and you’ll hear more about them in the coming days.

Then, we’ll be kicking the Keystone XL Pledge of Resistance into high gear with our partners Rainforest Action Network and the Other 98%. More than 76,000 people have already pledged to risk arrest if necessary to stop approval of Keystone XL. And we’ll be preparing for the State Department’s coming National Interest Determination, and making sure that President Obama knows a massive wave of civil disobedience from his best supporters will be imminent if his administration signals it is moving toward approval of Keystone XL.

And that’s just the beginning. The oil industry may have been able to largely corrupt the State Department’s environmental analysis, but it can’t change the facts and we won’t let them stop our activism. This is an all-in moment to get President Obama to reject Keystone XL.

  1. Danielle Droitsch, “Final environmental review for Keystone XL tar sands pipeline acknowledges significant climate impact,” National Resources Defense Council, January 31, 2014.



Monday: Nationwide Vigils to Protest Keystone XL

Action Network
January 31, 2014

Stop the Keystone XL Pipeline

This is an all-hands-on-deck moment to send the message to President Obama that Keystone XL fails his climate test and he must reject it. On the evening of Monday, February 3rd, we’ll come together around the country to make our voices heard. RSVP for an event near you or host your own.

The No KXL protest vigils are organized by CREDO, Rainforest Action Network, Sierra Club, 350, The Other 98%, Center for Biological Diversity, Oil Change International, Bold Nebraska, Energy Action Coalition, The Hip Hop Caucus, Environmental Action, Waterkeeper Alliance, Friends of the Earth, Forest Ethics, and others.



Keystone XL Pipeline Fact Sheet

U.S. Department of State
Office of the Spokesperson
Washington, DC
January 31, 2014

On January 31, 2014, the U.S. Department of State (“the Department”) released the Final Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (Final Supplemental EIS). The analysis in the Final Supplemental EIS was done consistent with the National Environmental Policy Act and is in response to TransCanada’s application (May 4, 2012) for a Presidential Permit to construct and operate the Keystone XL Pipeline.

The President’s authority to approve or deny a cross-border pipeline permit is delegated to the Secretary of State or his designees in Executive Order 13337.

The analysis in the Final Supplemental EIS builds on the Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement released on March 1, 2013 as well as the documents released in 2011 as part of the previous Keystone XL Pipeline application.


The proposed Keystone XL project consists of a 875-mile long pipeline and related facilities to transport up to 830,000 barrels per day of crude oil from Alberta, Canada and the Bakken Shale Formation in Montana. The pipeline would cross the U.S. border near Morgan, Montana and continue through Montana, South Dakota, and Nebraska where it would connect to existing pipeline facilities near Steele City, Nebraska for onward delivery to Cushing, Oklahoma and the Gulf Coast area.

The Final Supplemental EIS is not a decisional document on whether to approve or deny the proposed project. The Final Supplemental EIS is a technical assessment of the potential environmental impacts related to the proposed pipeline. It responds to over 1.9 million comments received since June 2012 (from both the scoping and Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement comment periods). The Final Supplemental EIS reflects the most current information on the proposed Project as well as discussions the Department has had with both state and federal agencies. Notable changes since the Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement released in March 2013, include: an expanded analysis of potential oil releases; an expanded climate change analysis; an updated oil market analysis incorporating new economic modeling; and an expanded analysis of rail transport.

The Presidential Permit evaluation process (see figure below) now focuses on whether the proposed Project serves the national interest, which involves consideration of many factors: including, energy security; environmental, cultural, and economic impacts; foreign policy; and compliance with relevant federal regulations and issues. During this time the Department will consult with, at least, the eight agencies identified in the Executive Order: the Departments of Defense, Justice, Interior, Commerce, Transportation, Energy, Homeland Security and the Environmental Protection Agency.

A 30-day comment period begins on February 5, 2014 and will close on March 7, 2014. During this period, members of the public and other interested parties are encouraged to submit comments on the national interest to Comments are not private and will be made public. Comments may also be mailed directly to:

U.S. Department of State Bureau of Energy Resources
Room 4843
Attn: Keystone XL Public Comments
2201 C Street
NW Washington, D.C. 20520

Additional information related to the application is available at:

Unless a copyright is indicated, information on State Department websites is in the public domain and may be copied and distributed without permission. Citation of the U.S. State Department as source of the information is appreciated.

see also:

Approving Keystone XL could be the biggest mistake of Obama’s presidency, January 31, 2014

Tar sands exploitation would mean game over for climate, warns leading scientist, May 19, 2013

from the archives:

Global Power Project, Part 10: TransCanada Corporation – Kings of the Keystone Pipeline

Shift — Beyond the Numbers of the Climate Crisis + Coalition Of The Willing

Keystone XL Pipeline Civil Disobedience

TransCanada Seizes Land In Texas By Eminent Domain by Walter Brasch