Pipe’s up

The controversial Keystone XL pipeline is now under construction, as announced in the LA Times on Aug. 16. The pipeline was approved last month after months of heated debate (“Put that in your pipe,” Dec. 15, 2011). Construction began on a portion of the pipeline in Livingston, Texas, but a group of protesters, called the Tar Sands Brocade, had planned an Aug. 16 Day of Action and turned up near the construction site with signs. The Brocade hopes it will have a similar impact to earlier protests, which were effective in delaying the project, but many activists are unsure of how feasible it is to stop further construction. Those who oppose the pipeline are concerned about potential disasters which could contaminate the Ogallala aquifer, through which the pipe will pass. The aquifer is a primary source of water for the Great Plains region, which grows and provides much of the food for the world.