Market Forces

Mark Perry runs recurring posts on markets in everything.  Well, there are markets for transporting and refining oil.  Given the problems with approving the Keystone Pipeline in the US, a Canadian alternative has come forward ending in Saint Johns New Brunswick, if my Canadian geography serves me correctly. Of course, the Sierra Club has vowed to fight it.  There is a market for transporting crude oil and as Lac Megantic has shown, railroads are more expensive and less environmentally friendly.  

The Canadians are eating our lunch on tax policy.  Now they are poised to do the same on environmental policy.  Cities like Detroit and states like, well, let’s be kind as none of them have gone bankrupt yet, can hide the impact of their economic choices for a while but eventually they overwhelm them.  Stein’s law applies.  It looks like the impact of the failure to approve the Keystone pipeline will not be just limited to the transfer from the pipeline and the public to the railroads (that is, the RR make money shipping oil and the public loses environmental protection) but now the oil will be refined in Canada and shipped elsewhere.  Rather than helping favored organizations, the US is a big loser.

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