Chris Knittel of MIT on Hillary's opposition of Keystone (9-24-15)
Sep 24, 2015|
Chris Knittel, professor of energy and applied economics at the MIT Sloan School of Management, discusses Hillary Clinton's opposition to the Keystone XL Pipeline
Transcript - Not for consumer use. Robot overlords only. Will not be accurate.
Live from the boston.com. Newsroom. It's the boston.com. Morning shelves and unfortunately. From my perspective. One that interferes with our ability to move forward to deal with all the other issues therefore I oppose it with Jim Carrey again. And John meter per hour. I don't think it's in the best interests. What we need to do to combat climate change I will be rolling out in a few days. Hey my plan for a North America and North American approach to fighting climate change and clean and a on the voice of Boston WR KL. 905 you're on the WRQ boston.com morning show what you just heard Hillary Clinton making comments on Tuesday evening. Related to the Keystone Pipeline I wanna read five takes on the pipeline. If come from Hillary Clinton over the last five years in October of 2010. She said that we are inclined. To back. In June of 2014 she said I can't respond but we're trying to get it right. In January of 2015. She said I'm not going to express an opinion from. In July of 2015. If it is undecided when I've become president I will answer your questions is really consistent and in September of 2015. In which was two nights ago she said I oppose it. She said that de Moines Iowa went house by student. From Drake University how she felt about it shoes so. That was I don't think it was so much a surprise a lot of people's. In a lot of people's opinions she opposed to it however I think people were very surprised that she made the decision that she. Culture is backed against launching pad to announce how she's feeling about it which which which you expect as a that we wouldn't know what a you know a lot of people are wondering why she might be opposed to it and done our next guest is someone who is in favor. Of the pipeline into maybe talk to us a little bit about why she should be in favor of it in his right union. Joining us now I want to maturity your name right sir it's Christopher committal. And he is with the Williams Barton Rogers professor of energy he's also professor of applied economics. At the MIT Sloan school of management. And professor I'm hoping I sent it correctly. Thank you very much are so were you surprised if Hillary Clinton did come out this week and say that she's opposed to the pipeline. I wasn't too surprised belt say I was a bit disappointed. The keystone. Pipeline has turned into this symbolic debate about climate change and and really the pipeline has very little do with its own greenhouse gas emissions. Right. What do you think the pipeline is about her. Well it's about really it's about money. So currently oiled. In the nit last in in southern Canada sells for about ten to twenty dollars less than. Will oil everywhere else in the world. And building that pipeline would. Basically allow those oil producers to two I get the world oil price for their oil and that and that's good for. The economy and that's obviously good for the oil producers. You said just a moment ago those who are opposed to it have this debate about greenhouse effect. But they also they they also argue that they think it would just be dangerous environmental list believe it would be dangerous to build a pipeline across the United States such a way. To those individuals you say why. Well we it it's certainly the case that any time you build a pipeline of this scale you gotta be careful. And you wanna be keep in mind environmental issues. That may responsive critiques like that is that the alternative to the pipeline is sending oil. In rail cars. And we've already had a few high profile accidents. Catastrophic accident sort of Oriole real Kurtz giving an accident. You know we certainly have and in fact have been. I in my opinion quite fortunate that they have been any worse than what they have. That's right then and we would expect the amount of oil being shipped on real cars to go up now the EPA is it is. Trying to keep on top of that by increasing the standards of real cars but there's there's always that risk I think. Most. People in the industry would agree that sending oil to a pipeline is safer than simply a real car. And his in this project the definition of shovel ready Yemeni could create 9000. Jobs is that correct and pumped three billion dollars into the economy. It is shovel ready they've they've been trying to build it for quite sometime and I should. You know we should be fair I think there's hyperbole on both sides. A lot of the those 9000 jobs would be temporary of course people like temporary jobs we need those sorts of jobs but. I mean critique of the politics around this is that people are exaggerating. Boat that cost and the benefit. Opposite of what do you think the let's let's not exaggerate let's talk about the costs and the benefits in your opinion. Like that beginning with the benefits of building this pipeline. For the benefit our. Basically bringing well to the country. Allowing oil producers in the midwest to. Basically get a fair price for their product. Al Wynn pipeline was originally proposed it it would have had big macroeconomic benefit is if you remember. We were right in the right in the middle of the Great Recession should. During recessionary periods actually temporary jobs or are very useful and and can have big macroeconomic effects. So it's it's a bit of a shame that we missed that opportunity. And what what do you think is a downside. So the a lot of the debate has focused on greenhouse gas emissions. It is the case that tar sands oil coming from the south southern Canada off. Is sturdier than average or ill that we. Consumed in the US but the key question from the climate change perspective. Is what oil does that replace. That is if we don't build pipelines so we get less oil coming from Canada. We're gonna get more oil from somewhere else in the world. And it turns out that that's likely to be Venezuelan heavy crude oil which is actually dirty air from the climate change perspective then. Canadians to understand. So sleep Alonso argument goes by I think there's the what I would like the policy makers to focus on here are the actual cost to. And benefits and the and the actual costs are that you're building a pipeline. And there's always an opportunity for leaks out of the pipeline and we certainly have to be very careful from. A local environment perspective when we're building a pipeline of this scale. And if we do not build this what's your alternative for Canada. Well that's the great questions so one alternative is more real course. Another alternative is to build the pipeline around the US. And they've they've been. Analyzing two opportunities one to build it westward and want to build eastward. And that would be somewhat of a shame as well because in the oil would would be exported to other parts of the world. And what would they that would ultimately cost Americans how much more. I get. That's unknown. Is this is the short answer I think what it would cost. The US is that we wouldn't have control over that oil and we couldn't ship that oil to US refineries and Gulf Coast. Well it's a debate that no doubt will come up with this presidential election gets into full steam and I guess what I mean is acutely on each side of of the IL and we now know if that candidate on the democratic side is Hillary Clinton that she will be opposed to the idea. Thank you Christopher can handle very much. Yeah. 912 pier of the WRKO boston.com morning show went like you know. That is box office Thursday which is presented this week by the north shore music theatre Texas the code word Billy that's BI LLY. To 68680 within the next ten minutes to be entered to win a pair of tickets for Billy Elliot the musical the north shore music theatre. 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