CTV was reporting that Peter Kent may be moving on and therefore would be out as Environment Minister. Not sure there's much a new Canadian minister might do to sway the Obama administration but Keystone has got to be figuring into Harper's thinking. Is Rempel, currently the Parliamentary Secretary to Kent, the one?
Whoever it is, they're also going to have to deal with this burgeoning - and very warranted - focus onpetcoke. This oil sands byproduct gained greater visibility recently given the Koch brothers' piling of it on the Detroit waterfront to the discomfort of Windsorites looking on from across the river.
We, for the most part, won't burn it for fuel due to its high emissions levels and the "Environmental Protection Agency will no longer allow any new licenses permitting the burning of petroleum coke in the United States." So it is largely being shipped overseas to China and Mexico, nations that don't care much about emissions levels. Shouldn't we Canadians be concerned about that? Particularly if Keystone were to be approved, with the amounts of petcoke that will be produced.
Worth noting that one place using Petcoke close to home is Nova Scotia because, basically, its cheap. In fact that's where part of that big pile is going. Nevertheless:
Renewables produced 18.3% of [NS's] electricity in 2012, the highest total ever. Approved wind farms to be built and the proposed Maritime Link project would help us reach 40% renewables by 2020 and continue to reduce our use of coal and pet coke.
...which 18.2 per cent figure is considerably larger than, I think, Ontario.
PS. Maritime Link is this. When finished, it will connect the NS power grid to NFLD and surplus power from the Lower Churchill Hydroelectric Generation Project.