A former Keystone XL Pipeline worker is speaking out about the unemployment troubles he and his fellow workers are facing due to the Biden administration’s decision to stop construction on the years-long project suddenly.
On day one, Joe Biden signed an executive order to halt the construction of the pipeline meant to bring Candian crude oil safely and swiftly into the United States. Democrats gave the excuse that the project was being halted due to its adding to the climate crisis but there is still no evidence that the risk of leaks outweighs the damage done and oil lost during transportation. On top of that, studies show that the pipeline actually helped improve the environment by reducing CO2 costs in transporting the oil from Canada to Texas.
But the environmental impact is only one element the Democrats got wrong. The economic impact is also going to be devastating for many, including those who worked on the pipeline.
This includes Neal Crabtree, a welding foreman who’s been working on the pipeline since 1997. Crabtree was interviewed by Fox News on the matter.
“Just like the rest of the country, COVID hurt us bad. We had a lot of projects canceled,” he told Fox News. “We’ve got guys that haven’t worked in months, and in some cases years, and to have a project of this magnitude canceled, it’s going to hurt a lot of people, a lot of families, a lot of communities.”
Texas Senator Ted Cruz brought up the fact that thousands of people like Crabtree would be without a job with this sudden stroke of a pen to Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg who simply responded that the Biden administration was “very eager to see those workers continue to be employed in good-paying union jobs, even if they might be different ones,” but Crabtree made it clear that it’s not as simple as switching jobs.
“I don’t consider this a job, I consider it a career,” he said. “You spend a lifetime fine-tuning your skills and if you go start another job you’re starting at the bottom. I doubt that these politicians would like it if someone told them to go start over and find a different job.”
The Biden administration believes that what it’s doing is taking a more responsible and green approach to oil, jobs, and climate change, but as Crabtree makes it clear, their ideas aren’t exactly well thought out.
“I can’t understand how the pipeline industry has become the villains,” said Crabtree. “The American public doesn’t understand that by not building this pipeline, it’s not going to keep the oil from getting to the market. It’s already coming.”
“You can’t just flip a switch and go from fossil fuels to renewable energy,” he added.
Like the other thousands of workers, Crabtree fears for his future and admits to having broken down into tears inside his truck after his team was laid off.
“I’m in the process of building a house, trying to live the American dream, and the bank might own it before I get a chance to live in it,” he said.
Laid-off Keystone XL worker: Biden's canceling of the Keystone pipeline “is going to hurt a lot of people, a lot of families, a lot of communities” pic.twitter.com/eoOc91Vhkg
— Steve Guest (@SteveGuest) January 26, 2021
It’s easy to dismiss men like Crabtree from the safety of an office in a town far away, but the truth is that the pipeline project was a massive employment center with a very solid purpose. With the stroke of a pen, Biden terminated the careers of thousands of Americans and for little more than a political show.