DENVER — Coloradans reacted to President Donald Trump’s executive orders Tuesday that kick-started the Keystone XL and Dakota Access pipeline projects.
“I’d like to appeal to President Trump to appeal to the millions of lives,” said Brent Kaufman, a Coloradan who like many environmentalists in the state has traveled to Standing Rock in North Dakota.
“Water is life,” Kaufman reiterated, saying he hopes to return to Standing Rock soon.
“It took no time at all for President Trump to show that his energy and environmental agenda will be focused on fast-tracking the dirty, polluting energy sources of the past, Conservation Colorado executive director Pete Maysmith said in a statement. “The economics of these projects don’t make sense, local communities are opposed to them, and they will have major impacts on our climate.”
On the energy side, the news is a welcome change.
“We are excited about this — it is a return to level-headed policies,” said Aaron Johnson, a spokesman with Western Energy Alliance. “Expanding production up in the that region of North Dakota and Montana means job creation here in the Colorado area.”
Dan Haley, president and CEO of Colorado Oil and Gas Association, issued a statement regarding the executive actions.
“President Trump’s decision to support the Keystone XL and Dakota Access pipelines signals the new administration’s commitment to having a robust infrastructure in place to develop our country’s natural resources. And any executive action that creates jobs in the United States is a good thing — especially jobs in the manufacturing industry that support the development of our country’s energy infrastructure.
“We have domestic steel workers waiting to go back to work. These decisions leave us feeling optimistic that we’re all working toward a future of domestic energy independence and a new era of international policy.”