Bill McKibben, co-founder and director of 350.org, joins Democracy Now! to discuss "Draw the Line," a national day of action this Saturday to protest the Keystone XL oil pipeline. Already this week on Monday, 13 people were arrested during a protest in Houston in front of the offices of TransCanada, the company behind the controversial project. McKibben has just come out with the new book, "Oil and Honey: The Education of an Unlikely Activist." McKibben argues that Obama’s pending decision on whether to approve or reject the Keystone XL’s construction is a historic opportunity. "If [Obama] says no to the Keystone pipeline, he will be the first world leader ever to say, 'Here is something we are not going to build because of its effect on the climate,'" McKibben says. "It might have the effect of unfreezing the climate negotiations that have been wrecked ever since Copenhagen … Sometimes Obama, correctly, can blame his absurd Congress. But in the case of the Keystone pipeline, he gets to make the call himself. So he darn well better make that call."
AMY GOODMAN: What is it about the oil, tar sands?
BILL MCKIBBEN: Is incredibly dirty stuff. They call it Bitumen. It is oil mixed with sand. So, you have to — not only is it dirty like all oil terms of carbon emissions, but it is extra dirty because you have to heat it up or whatever to get it out of the ground in the first place. I was just up there this summer to look at the tar sands complex. The technical name for what was going on Mordor, it is unbelievable. You just can’t imagine how gruesome it is. But, its biggest effect in the end is the pool of carbon that it pours into the atmosphere that drives the global warming that accounts for the pictures you just showed from Colorado. We’ve destabilized the planet’s climate system, and the only question is, how much farther we are going to go.
Read an excerpt from Bill McKibben’s New Book "Oil and Honey" after the jump...