The planet won a huge victory last year when U.S. President Obama rejected TransCanada’s Keystone XL pipeline. Hundreds of thousands of us stood up for our futures and told Big Oil that people, not corporations, hold the real power.
But if secret corporate rights trade deals like the TPP go through, it’s going to get a lot harder to stop climate-destroying projects like Keystone XL. Case in point? TransCanada is suing the United States for $15 billion for canning the pipeline.
TransCanada is using the TPP’s precursor, the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), arguing that Obama’s historic rejection violated the rights of its foreign investors by thwarting the company’s “expectations.” Yes, that is literally what it’s arguing.
TransCanada, you’ve got to be kidding. Don’t sue America because it cancelled your favorite pipeline.
If the TPP goes through, the world can expect a lot more of these lawsuits -- corporations suing governments because sometimes democracy inconveniently gets in the way of profit. The TPP would empower major polluters to follow in TransCanada’s footsteps and undermine our critical climate safeguards in private trade tribunals.
Pretty scary stuff, right? It gets worse. If corporations feel entitled to our land and resources to the point they will sue any country that gets between them and more profit, there is no end to the number of firms that will exploit the TPP to undermine restrictions and democratic decisions to maximize fracking, offshore drilling, pipeline expansion and fossil fuel extraction everywhere the treaty holds sway.
In the meantime, we need to show corporations that people still matter more than trade deals. Tell TransCanada to withdraw its spurious lawsuit.