Proos: Delay of Canadian pipeline approval a ‘joke’

LANSING – Sen. John Proos today announced his disappointment with the recent decision by the U.S. Department of State to delay approval of a new U.S.-Canada pipeline until 2013.

“I am upset and frustrated that the Obama Administration is putting politics ahead of creating American jobs,” said Proos, R-St. Joseph. “Southwest Michigan families, job providers and schools are struggling with high gas prices. Approving this pipeline to bring Canadian oil to U.S. markets will lower the price at the pump and also create thousands of Michigan jobs. To delay it until after the 2012 election is a joke and a slap in the face to all Americans.”

The decision comes after the state Senate adopted a Proos’ resolution encouraging the president and Congress to support the increased importation of oil derived from Canadian oil sands. Senate Resolution 57 also urged the U.S. secretary of state to approve the TransCanada Keystone Coast Expansion pipeline project that has been awaiting a presidential permit since 2008.

“We must look hard at America’s long- and short-term energy policies because the status quo is hurting our economy and costing us jobs,” Proos said. “We would like to move toward more sustainable energy sources, but we still have a need for oil. We have resources available right here in North America, and I urge the federal government to reconsider its delay and help energize our economy and create jobs by looking to our Canadian friends to help reduce gas prices.” 

Proos noted that as a peninsular state, it is necessary for Michigan to import virtually all of its energy resources.

“Most of the oil America uses comes from unstable Middle East governments that use our dollars for undemocratic, often dangerous purposes – including funding terrorism,” Proos said. “Instead of financially propping up these regimes, we should tap into Canadian sources, strengthening our ties with this important ally and improving our national security. By partnering with Canada to meet our energy needs, we can simultaneously make the world a safer place and create jobs.”