In another failure for Donald Trump, the Keystone XL pipeline he revived shortly after taking office leaked more than 200,000 gallons of oil in South Dakota on Thursday.
The company operating the Keystone XL, TransCanada, said the pipeline has been shut down and they are investigating what led to the leak.
As CNN noted, Trump issued a permit back in March that paved the way for Keystone XL’s construction – something that former President Barack Obama and other environmental activists had warned could do more harm than good.
But Trump, never moved by facts or scientific evidence, has repeatedly perpetuated right-wing myth’s about the pipeline. In fact, in a tweet during the primary campaign, Trump said this about the project:
So sad that Obama rejected Keystone Pipeline. Thousands of jobs, good for the environment, no downside!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 6, 2015
Of course, this turned out to be a trifecta of lies.
Despite the claim that “thousands of jobs” would be added if the pipeline was approved, CNN noted that Keystone XL would result in just 35 permanent positions – hardly an economic boon. In fact, it’s plausible that more jobs will be created to clean up environmental messes caused by the pipeline than to actually build it.
Not only would it create few long-term jobs, but the energy transported via the pipeline would be exported to other countries for profit, not kept in the United States, which debunks another right-wing myth that Keystone XL is necessary to achieve American energy independence.
The biggest whopper, though, is that Keystone is, as Trump said in 2015, “good for the environment” and has no downsides. As 210,000 gallons of oil leak from the pipeline on Thursday, I think it’s safe to say that “no downside” wasn’t quite accurate.
Of course, one thing we can thank the pipeline for is that it’s shaping up to be a perfect metaphor for Donald Trump, who has spent the last year demonstrating that he is the human oil spill of presidents.
Sean Colarossi currently resides in Cleveland, Ohio. He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and was an organizing fellow for both of President Obama’s presidential campaigns. He also worked with Planned Parenthood as an Affordable Care Act Outreach Organizer in 2014, helping northeast Ohio residents obtain health insurance coverage.