Two leading sustainable business organizations representing 5,000 small businesses today sent a letter calling on President Obama to reject the controversial Keystone XL pipeline and, instead, invest in clean energy technologies.

The pipeline would deliver oil from the tar sands in Canada to the Gulf of Mexico across the United States.

In their letter, Green America’s Green Business Network and The Green Chamber of Commerce said the pipeline would further United States addiction to oil and risk disastrous new oil spills in rivers and the Ogallala aquifer.  Global warming and oil spills have been seen to have an extremely detrimental effect on the economy, which affects the well-being of their businesses.

In addition to these risks, production of the 700,000 barrels of heavy crude that would travel from the tar sands every day creates a tremendous amount of greenhouse gas emissions that contribute to global warming.  Both the potential for environmentally harmful oils spills and increase in GHG emissions would be harmful to the environment, in addition to the harm to business in the United States.

The text of the letter to President Obama follows:

“We write to you on behalf of thousands of small businesses in the United States that are deeply concerned about the proposed Keystone XL pipeline.  The well-being of our businesses and the economy in the United States are tied to the health of our environment.  The Keystone XL pipeline will have an immensely negative impact on the environment.  It would bring 700,000 barrels of heavy crude from Canadian tar sands to the US every day, furthering the US addiction to oil, and risking new oil spills in rivers and the Ogallala aquifer. The production of oil from tar sands would generate enormous greenhouse gas emissions, and create greater impacts from global warming.

The impacts of global warming — from droughts, to floods, to extreme weather – are bad for business in the United States.  As we saw in the Gulf, oil spills also have a devastating impact on the economy.  The failure to shift America away from its dependence on oil to cleaner fuels will further imperil our economy and reduce the number of green jobs we need for sustainable economic growth.

Your administration has taken bold and necessary steps to increase the green energy economy in the US.  Now, we urge you to reject the Keystone XL pipeline, and further invest in clean energy technologies.  It is the right decision for the US, and it is the right decision for business.”

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