A Young Leader’s Response to the Keystone XL Pipeline Decision

NWF   |   January 20, 2012

Guest blog by NWF Young Leader, Dan Weisshaar

Dan Weisshar is a former NWF Global Warming Policy Intern and currently serves as a Youth Advisor on NWF’s Mid-Atlantic Regional Board Directors. Dan  grew up in Colorado and Eastern Wyoming and earned his degree in Global   Studies from Warren Wilson College in Asheville, North Carolina. Most recently, Dan worked in the Clean Air Movement with Breathe DC until October of this year.  Dan is currently exploring his next opportunities in the environmental and rural advocacy fields.  Dan can be reached at danweisshaar@gmail.com


If you are a sports fan, you are probably aware of the 24 hour rule.  The 24 hour rule simply states that you have 24 hours to celebrate your last big win, then show up the next day ready to work.

Obama and Secretary Clinton have given us the chance to observe the 24 hour rule.  Due to the hard work of thousands of activist, students, farmers, ranchers, and people of faith, Big Oil lost.  Let that sink in. Because of the letters, testifying, editorials, talking to neighbors and participating in one of the largest and best coordinated demonstrations in this generation, BIG OIL LOST.  We stopped the Keystone XL pipeline from putting oil in our soil.  We proved that people care about the middle of nowhere because habitat is a priority.  We sent signals to the markets that green energy is what consumers crave.  We kept billions of tons of CO2 in the ground.  We did that!

But….tomorrow’s another day and there are still big fights ahead of us.  Big Oil is greedy and it wants to grow.  We know from experience that Big Oil will throw everything it has into making more money, it will lie, it will ignore reality, it will throw more cash than we have at politicians.  Big Oil will not spend much time licking its wounds and crying in defeat.

The Obama administration pulled through for us this time, but Obama also signaled that the Carbon age is not over.  A new proposal for a new pipeline will be submitted, and we need to be ready for it.  We need to prepare ourselves for another victory.  Obama is already getting heat for his decision, and this is an election year.  Big Oil is already painting us as a handful of radicals opposed to energy security.

We know what we are up against and what it takes to win!  So lets take the next 24 hours (maybe a bit more) and then prepare for another battle.  We have a lot more work to do and it should be fun.

See Dan’s previous guest post, A Young Leader’s Call to Action

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Published: January 20, 2012