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Tag: Keystone XL Pipeline

Flashpoints: The Pigs In The Pipeline — And In The White House

Greg Palast on KPFA Flashpoints with Dennis J Bernstein

Last month the Keystone pipeline cracked in South Dakota and dumped hundreds of thousands of gallons of the dirtiest tar sands oil onto a previously pristine prairie. In this episode of Flashpoints we discuss how this burst came about when there were supposed to be foolproof ...more

TrumpCare dies, XL flies
and the Secret Winner is…

Greg Palast 

by Greg Palast for OpedNews

Koch Brothers celebrate their victory (from The Best Democracy Money Can Buy)

When RyanCare-TrumpCare finally ended up face-down in the swimming pool, triumphalist Democrats whooped and partied and congratulated themselves on defeating the Trump-Ryan monstrosity.

But deep in their counting house, counting their gold, three brothers cackled with private jubilation.

David and Charles Koch knew the day was theirs.

Joining them in the celebration was Brother Billy, William Koch, who will share in their $21 billion windfall that the President arranged for them only hours before TrumpCare crashed—when Trump announced his State Department had formally approved the Keystone XL Pipeline.

Let’s start with that $21 billion.

The XL Keystone Pipeline would take the world’s heaviest, filthiest crude from Canada’s tar sands, and snake with it all the way down to Texas.

From Greg Palast’s film The Best Democracy Money Can Buy: A Tale of Billionaires and Ballot Bandits
Now here’s a question I never hear from our sleep-walking media: Exactly why are we sending oil all the way across the United States to Texas. I mean, doesn’t Texas already have a little oil?

In fact, Texas is drowning in oil, choking in it. But the Kochs’ Texas refinery can’t use much local crude. The Koch Industries Flint Hills refinery on the Texas Gulf Coast was designed specifically to crack only the world’s “heaviest” (i.e. filthiest) crude.

Texas crude ain’t heavy enough, ain’t dirty enough, for the Kochs’ Gulf Coast operation, originally designed for imports for the world’s major source of heavy crude: Venezuela. The price the Kochs paid for Venezuela’s oil was set by its President Hugo Chavez, and now, by Chavez’ chosen successor, Nicolas Maduro.

Chavez and Maduro both told me they’d squeeze the Kochs by their tankers. They have.

Enter the Mounties: Canadians sell their super-heavy crude at a $12 to $30 a barrel discount to the Venezuelan price. If the XL Pipeline is complete, the Kochs can suck down Canada’s cheap cruddy crude for a minimum savings of $1.27 billion in a single year.

The Kochs pocket billions while we fry: burning the Canadian tar sands reserve will, all by itself, raise the temperature of the entire planet by 0.7 degrees Fahrenheit.

Over the life of the XL Keystone Pipeline, the various Koch operations will put at minimum …more

Keystone Leaking
‘Smart’ PIGS Fail Again

Greg Palast 

There’s yet another leak on the Keystone Pipeline – it was discovered by a “passerby” – not TransCanada itself.  That doesn’t surprise us at all, if you’ve read my report on PIGS, you’d know why.

Reporting for Channel 4 News we talked to whistleblowers that told us the true story behind pipeline safety. The problem wasn’t just their terrible safety record, or even people taking shots at them. The problem was a PIG, not Porky, but a Smart PIG.
keystone_pipeline_FB
The Pig in the XL Pipeline
Insider reveals concealed “error” in pipeline safety equipment that could blow away the GOP’s XL pipe dream

“They threatened me. Last night I got a call and they threatened me. If I talked.”His information: The software for the crucial piece of pipeline safety equipment, the “Smart PIG,” has a flaw known to the industry but concealed from regulators.

The flaw allows cracks, leaks and corrosion to go undetected – and that saves the industry billions of dollars in pipe replacements. But there’s a catch. Pipes with cracks and leaks can explode – and kill.

Federal law requires the oil and gas industry to run a PIG, a Pipeline Inspection Gauge, through big oil and gas pipelines. The robot porker, tethered to a GPS, beeps and boops as it rolls through, electronically squealing when it finds dangers.

But whistleblowers told us at Channel 4 Dispatches (the “60 Minutes” of Britain) that the software is deliberately calibrated to ignore or minimize deadly problems. They know because themselves worked on the software design team.

This week, President Obama refused to issue a permit for the Keystone XL Pipeline, but invited its owner, Trans-Canada, to re-apply. The GOP has gone wild over Obama’s hesitation, screeching that slowing the Canada-to-Houston pipe for a full safety review is a jobs killer.

But it’s the Pipeline that’s the killer. Here’s what Pig Man #2 told me, on camera, his face in shadow: …more

Keystone Delay?
Kochs’ President will OK Kochs’ Pipe

Greg Palast 

Yesterday TransCanada called for the State Department to pause its review of the Keystone XL Pipeline until after the 2016 election. Of course, with every Democratic candidate against the filthy crude tube, and every Republican for it, the delay is a gamble on the race.

But who’s behind the pipe — that is, who benefits? And why in the world are we sending oil all the way down from Canada…Texas? Texas, I hear, already has a little oil.

The answer is a four letter word: Koch. Read the story we broke in Vice Magazine, “I want my fair share – and that’s ALL OF IT.

The Pig in the XL Pipeline
Insider reveals concealed “error”
in pipeline safety equipment that could blow away the GOP’s XL pipe dream

Greg Palast 

For Firedoglake

“They threatened me. Last night I got a call and they threatened me. If I talked.”

“Pig Man #2,” a pipeline industry insider, had a good reason to be afraid.  He was about to blow the whistle on a fraud, information that could blow away the XL Keystone Pipeline project.

His information: The software for the crucial piece of pipeline safety equipment, the “Smart PIG,” has a flaw known to the industry but concealed from regulators.

The flaw allows cracks, leaks and corrosion to go undetected – and that saves the industry billions of dollars in pipe replacements.  But there’s a catch. Pipes with cracks and leaks can explode – and kill.

Federal law requires the oil and gas industry to run a PIG, a Pipeline Inspection Gauge, through big oil and gas pipelines.  The robot porker, tethered to a GPS, beeps and boops as it rolls through, electronically squealing when it finds dangers.

But whistleblowers told us …more

XL Keystone – The Pig in the Pipeline
The GOP is pushing a pipeline
that could blow you to pieces

Greg Palast 

Special to TruthOut.org

Palast conducted a five-continent investigation of Big Oil for British TV’s premier current affairs program, Dispatches, and for BBC Worldwide. This report is based on the broadcast seen prime-time worldwide—but not yet in the USA.

Whistleblowers have told Britain’s “Dispatches” that the safety software on major US pipelines contains deliberate errors—and so pipelines can — and have — busted, leaked, exploded …and killed.

Congressional Republicans are holding extended unemployment benefits hostage until President Obama agrees to speed up approval to build the XL Keystone Pipeline. XL Keystone will slice down through the entire width of the USA, moving tar-sands oil from Canada to Houston.

The oil industry promises that the Pipeline will be safe. But the pipe is only safe if the PIG inside it can squeal.

Federal law requires the industry to run a diagnostic robot PIG, a Pipeline Inspection Gauge, that will squeal when something is wrong: a crack, dangerous corrosion, anything that might lead to a spill or explosion.

But PIGs are only as good as the software that tracks and analyzes their signals. And the software used by Big Oil has been compromised—deliberately. …more