We know that tar sands oil is the dirtiest fuel in the world, and that tar sands projects create toxic lakes filled with cancer causing heavy metals and neurotoxins.1 We also know that the proposed Keystone XL tar sands pipeline would cross pristine land in six states and put almost 30 percent of our country’s agricultural water at risk of contamination.2
But a new report reaffirms that the corrosive nature of tar sands oil will increase risk of spills to a degree not seen in conventional oil pipelines.
The Sierra Club, in partnership with the Natural Resources Defense Council, the National Wildlife Federation, and Pipeline Safety Trust, is releasing a report this week that shows transporting tar sands oil is much more dangerous than transporting traditional oil.3
Why? Because tar sands oil is more corrosive than traditional crude oil, and its thicker nature means increased heat and pressure are needed to force it through a pipe, making ruptures and spills more likely.
We cannot allow regulators to treat tar sands oil the same as regular crude oil — write a letter to the editor today.
Despite the new risks posed by tar sands crude, American regulators have not created specific safeguards to protect communities along pipeline routes from spills and contamination.
Before we agree to transport tar sands oil across the Midwest, we need to make sure it’s not going to destroy our water and farmland.
The American people deserve a voice before new tar sands pipelines are approved — write a letter and make your voice heard.
From Sarah Hodgdon
Sierra Club Conservation Director
 Benjamin J. Wakefield. The Environmental Integrity Project. “Feeding U.S. Refinery Expansions with Dirty Fuel.” June 2008. Web. 8 July 2010.
 Dennehy, K.F. “High Plains regional ground-water study: U.S. Geological Survey Fact Sheet FS-091-00.” USGS. 2000 Web. 26 Oct. 2010 .
 Anthony Swift, Susan Casey-Lefkowitz, Elizabeth Shope, and Natural Resources Defense Council. Natural Resources Defense Council, National Wildlife Federation, Pipeline Safety Trust, and Sierra Club. “Tar Sands Pipelines Safety Risks.” Feb. 2011.