FACT CHECK: Are Energy Companies Exploiting The Pandemic?

CLAIM

Writing in The Guardian, Bill McKibben claims that “big oil is using the coronavirus to push through the Keystone XL pipeline,” in part because states continue to enact laws protecting critical infrastructure projects, construction

“(A) series of states quickly adopted laws making it a felony to protest “critical infrastructure” like pipelines. (Last week South Dakota, a crucial link on the KXL route, made it a felony even to “incite” such protest.) And the Department of Health and Human Services issued a memorandum exempting pipeline construction from stay-at-home orders because such work was “critical” – that is, …

FACT CHECK: Is 5G Spreading the Coronavirus?

CLAIM:

The coronavirus has continued to take its toll on the American economy – forcing non-essential businesses to shutter, driving up unemployment, and testing our healthcare system. But there has also been a fair amount of misinformation disseminated regarding the virus. CNN recently reported “One of the most recent, baseless conspiracy theories surrounding the virus is that 5G networks — the next generation of wireless technology that’s steadily being rolled out around the world — are fueling the global coronavirus pandemic.”

RATING: False

FACT CHECK:

CNN and many other mainstream media outlets have been quick to quash misinformation regarding claims …

FACT CHECK: Does State Legislation Infringe On Free Speech?

CLAIM

EcoWatch reports on legislation approved in Kentucky, South Dakota and West Virginia  designed to protect critical infrastructure projects and the workers who build them:

“While we are all paying attention to COVID-19 and the congressional stimulus packages, state legislatures are quietly passing fossil-fuel-backed anti-protest laws,” Greenpeace USA researcher Connor Gibson, who alerted HuffPost to the laws’ passage, told the news site. “These laws do nothing new to protect communities. Instead they seek to crack down on the sort of nonviolent civil disobedience that has shaped much of our nation’s greatest political and social victories.”

RATING:

False

FACT CHECK:

FACT CHECK: Are pipelines “dangerous” with “no clear benefits?”

CLAIM: The Roanoke Times recently published an opinion column alleging that pipelines are dangerous – specifically the Atlantic Coast and Mountain Valley natural gas pipelines that are currently under construction. The column also alleges these “dangerous projects” have “no clear benefits.”

RATING: False

FACT CHECK:

Like almost any process, transporting energy involves some level of risk. However, pipelines have played a key role in mitigating such risk. They have been determined to be the safest, most efficient, and most environmentally-conscious method of delivering the natural gas and oil that millions of Americans rely on each and every day.

When comparing …

FACT CHECK: Does the Dakota Access Pipeline need to be shut down during additional environmental review?

The University of Pittsburgh’s Pitt News published an opinion column calling for the Dakota Access Pipeline, a 1,172 mile crude oil pipeline that runs from North Dakota to Illinois, to be shut down as the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers conducts an additional environmental impact statement (EIS) on the pipeline as ordered by a federal judge last week. The column reads:

Until a more in-depth environmental statement is complete, we will not know the full scope of the pipeline’s risks. It’s possible that the USACE was accurate in its findings, but it’s also possible that the tribe’s concerns are valid.

FACT CHECK: Should DAPL Optimization be put on hold?

CLAIM: The Chicago Tribune recently highlighted environmental activists continued opposition to the proposed optimization of the Dakota Access Pipeline. The project – which has been approved by regulators in North Dakota, South Dakota, and Iowa – is awaiting a decision from the Illinois Commerce Commission after hearings took place in early March. On March 25, a federal judge ruled the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers must conduct additional environmental review of the pipeline despite nearly three years of safe operation. The Tribune reported:

Citing the judge’s ruling, as well as possible ramifications of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic on domestic and

FACT CHECK: Does the Dakota Access Pipeline Really Need A Further Review?

CLAIM: The Hill reports on a federal judge’s ruling that the Army Corps of Engineers must once again review environmental impacts of the Dakota Access Pipeline:

The controversial Dakota Access Pipeline hit another roadblock Wednesday when a federal judge struck down permits for the pipeline and ordered a full workup of the environmental impacts of the project. … Judge James Boasberg said the environmental analysis by both the companies behind the pipeline and the Corps were severely lacking.

“In projects of this scope, it is not difficult for an opponent to find fault with many conclusions made by an

FACT CHECK: Are The Keystone XL Pipeline Protests Protecting The Environment?

CLAIM: The New Yorker claims that protests against the Keystone XL pipeline have been successful in protecting the environment:

The Keystone fight was successful in stopping that pipeline, at least so far. … The delay has been very useful: it has meant eight hundred thousand barrels a day of the dirtiest oil on earth not flowing down through Nebraska.

RATING:

False

FACT CHECK:

Refusing to build the Keystone XL pipeline will do absolutely nothing to protect the environment or reduce the demand for oil. In fact, it will make transporting the oil that is taken from the ground more …

FACT CHECK: Is proposed LNG terminal threat to bird species?

CLAIM: The Houston Chronicle today reported environmental groups have employed yet another tactic in their attempts to stop construction of Commonwealth LNG’s proposed export facility in Cameron, Louisiana:

Environmentalists plan to sue the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service to protect a rare marsh bird whose coastal habitat is being lost to urbanization, agriculture, climate change and some say, the liquefied natural gas industry.

The Arizona-based Center For Biological Diversity and the New Orleans environmental group Healthy Gulf plan to sue the agency and U.S. Interior Secretary David Bernhardt to protect the eastern black rail, a shy marsh bird that can

The Latest Democratic Debate: Loose Talk Of Bans On Oil

In the Democratic presidential debate Sunday night, former Vice President Joe Biden and Senator Bernie Sanders touched on energy policy – and reiterated their positions on fracking (against) and focus on climate change.

But Biden, the new frontrunner after the latest primaries, said something noteworthy:

Number one, no more subsidies for the fossil fuel industry, no more drilling on federal lands, no more drilling, including offshore, no ability for the oil industry to continue to drill, period, ends, number one.

We don’t believe Biden is really calling for a complete ban on drilling for oil, but it does …