In today’s Washington Post, the paper looks at the upcoming State Department hearings in Nebraska regarding the Keystone XL Pipeline.
They quote UNL Professor, and hydrogeologist, Jim Goeke:
“I’d be comfortable if the pipeline was defeated on the basis of good, sound science and not emotion,” Goeke said. “I think it’s a reflection of the pride and love Nebraskans have for the Ogallala Aquifer. A lot of people love and treasure the aquifer, and they’re concerned the entire aquifer is at risk. And that just isn’t factual.”
But Professor Goeke, we have heard that windmills are better than oil spills and that we will all become hockey playing tar suckers if the pipe goes through!
You mean there is actual science involved?
Well, if you are at all interested or concerned or slightly amused or dadgummit angry about this issue, you owe it to yourself to read UNL Professor Jim Goeke’s Op-Ed in the LJS. He will inform you what the aquifer is and what it isn’t, and how the pipeline would and would not affect it.
Here is a small point:
The Ogallala Formation is layered rock, not a lake or a sandpit. Some people say “the lake beneath my feet” when referring to the aquifer. Others think of it as loose sand identical in all directions. These are misconceptions.
Start with that concept.
And then UNL Professor John Stansbury repeats what he wrote in his Op-Eds a few months ago. And though he has the Goeke’s analysis, he ignores the analysis of how a spill would spread in the aquifer.
Now Stansbury does give his analysis of how a spill in a river could spread, but…
1) That bolsters the argument for a route that is shorter and has fewer crossings at rivers and streams — the current proposed route, and;
2) He ignores the fact that there are currently lots of other pipelines that are older and won’t have the depth of placement that this one will, and aren’t built as well and the newest pipe will be.
So Stansbury’s argument says, essentially, shut down every pipe in America that currently crosses a river.
No wait, he is suggesting that the best, newest one is going to be the worst?
Hmm. That’s some logic working there.
But Professor Goeke again has given a scientific analysis based on his years of experience with wells and the Sandhills.
And has ANYONE on the anti-pipeline siderefuted his facts and analysis?
The only nay “argument” put out by one Jane Fleming Kleeb, Hastings School Board member and self-proclaimed nutrition expert is as follows: We don’t have an answer to Dr. Goeke’s expertise, so we need more studies.
Oh, and Jane questions Goeke’s allegiances.
Well, let than, let us question Jane’s allegiance.
She is financed by a left-wing sugar Daddy out of Omaha, and supported by ultra left wing radical environmentalists.
Their goal has NOTHING to do with the safety of the Sandhills or the aquifers (plural) or anything else in Nebraska. Their goal is to stop the Canadian Tar-Sands oil from coming to America.
That’s it. End of story.
All of her “Neb” part about aquifers and windmills and all the rest is just a sideshow to hopefully stop the whole thing.
If the original pipeline route had mirrored the current Keystone pipeline route, they would have found a reason to argue against that one.
That’s the way it is.
They will keep telling you to ignore all the studies that have been done that disagree with their theories. And they will tell you to ignore all of the scientists that use things like facts and experience, when those facts and experiences don’t agree with their theories.
And that’s it.
And did we mention the sideshows?
No, you are not just going to a State Department hearing about the pipes.
You are going to get (wait for it) drum circles!
You know, just like the ones at the Grateful Dead and Phish shows!
Or, just like the ones at the Montana Governor’s office.
It’s like Burning Man on the plains!
And you’ll get vegetable festivals, that will tell you about the evils of food. And you’ll get movies about the evils of coal (and the electricity that it creates, no doubt). And you’ll get armbands and bumper stickers.
But you will not get, in this scientific discussion, and discussion of science. At least not by the Boldies and their pals.
A while back, someone suggested that Jane’s aggressive, partisan, attack style politics don’t serve Nebraska.
And we would suggest that someone is still correct, on that mark.