In Wake of Keystone Opening, Environmental Group Seeks to Label 'Dirty' Fuel

More fuel from Canada's tar sands will flow to the Northeast, the NRDC says.

Sections of the southern portion of the Keystone XL pipeline are laid out across a field in Sumner, Texas, in October 2012. Two years later, on Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2014, having just finished construction on the southern portion of the pipeline, owner TransCanada announced it had started moving oil through the system.
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"The dynamics of the petroleum system are such that it is virtually impossible to identify where gas is coming from," he says. "It is extraordinarily difficult to know what country a crude oil came from, to start with, once it goes to the refineries. And once it leaves the refineries, it's quite difficult to say what refinery made that."

Droitsch, who termed the labeling a "first step," was skeptical.

"Often we've seen industry cry wolf when it comes to something as simple as tracking fuel, and I would question that argument," she says. "People have the right to know what is going into their fuel tank."

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  • Update 1/23/14: This story has been updated to include a quote from Matt Dempsey. Clarification 1/24/14: Dempsey's identification has been clarified to more accurately reflect for whom he was speaking.