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Protesters to Keystone XL Pipeline: Don't Mess With Texas

Rocky Kistner

Posted February 19, 2012

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As Congressional Republicans and Big Oil allies in Washington try to resuscitate the massive Keystone XL tar sands pipeline, people on the frontlines have opened a new campaign to stop the massive $7 billion project. In Texas, landowners are locking arms to fight would-be pipeline builder TransCanada over eminent domain cases that may determine where the 1700-mile project will be built.

On Friday, protesters gathered in Paris, TX, and in Austin to voice their support for Lamar County farm manager Julia Trigg Crawford, who runs a 600-acre farms that grows corn, soybeans and wheat along the Red River near Paris, TX. More than 50 protesters traveled from nearby counties to wave flags and signs on the Lamar County courthouse steps, shouting slogans like “Don’t mess with Texas” and “This is what democracy looks like.”

Check out this video of the protest and interview with Julia Trigg Crawford:


The raucous protest included an unusual mix of tea party supporters, independents, Democrats, Republicans and even Occupy Dallas protesters. They were all there to support Crawford’s eminent domain court fight with TransCanada, which wants to run the Keystone XL pipeline through her property.

David Daniel, a landowner near Winnsboro, TX, has been fighting TransCanada for four years over their plans to run the pipeline though his wooded, spring-fed land near Winnsboro, TX. Daniel says he learned about the plan only after the company had already come on to his land and staked out its pipeline route, a route he says will threaten natural springs that communities depend on for drinking water. 

“The more people find out about the safety risks and that the oil will be exported, the more they are opposed. People in Texas are used to oil pipelines, but this one is different. It’s more toxic and more dangerous and threatens our groundwater. A lot of people feel they’ve been lied to.”

Daniel, who helps run a Keystone XL pipeline opposition group called Stop Tarsands Oil Pipelines, says local landowners are not going to give up, even though they are vastly outspend by TransCanada and its oil industry supporters.

From the looks of those who attended the rally on Friday, TransCanada has a big fight ahead with some angry folks in the Lone Star state. You don't mess with Texas without getting one. 

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Patricia SpeerFeb 20 2012 01:39 PM

You people are gross neglect to humanity Ewwwwww..........

Sxxxx WxxxxFeb 20 2012 04:09 PM

Nice article, but maybe a bit of retroactive editing can fix a 600-acre farms, and being vastly "outspend?"

Betsy GingerichFeb 20 2012 06:23 PM

I live in Kalamazoo and the newspaper had many articles about the oil spill in our river which is still not entirely cleaned up. People who live near the spill complain about feeling ill, but our state health department has yet to investigate their complaints. I applaud your efforts to keep this pipeline from being built.

BSFeb 21 2012 08:50 AM

Still no comments on what makes this pipeline more toxic and more dangerous than others??? Please, enlighten us.

50 people, huh?

Farms are the best place to put pipelines. Once they're in the ground, the farmer plants his crop like he always has. There's more to this than is being told. Usually it comes down to greedy lawyers misleading the landowners so they can get more billable hours. Other times it's a greedy landowner, but not usually.

BSFeb 22 2012 01:21 PM

Instability in the Middle East drives up oil prices.

Meanwhile, Canadian crude costs $70/bbl because there is too much and not enough pipelines to get it to market.

Yeah, let's stop that Keystone pipeline that would bring more of that cheap oil with none of the instability of the Middle East and instead rely on imports from other countries that are more expensive and more volatile.

Woo hoo! Boy aren't we all stupid!

MJHFeb 23 2012 10:07 AM

Not clear why the US prefers to buy oil from middle eastern tyrants than from Canada! Pilpeine to carry conventional crude and tar sands crude.

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