The Independent Women's Forum, a nonprofit group dedicated to representing women who believe in limited government and economic freedom, urges the State Department to approve the Keystone Pipeline Project.

The American economy is suffering. Unemployment remains above nine percent, long-term unemployment is at a historic high, and job creation remains sluggish. The Administration has emphasized that facilitating private sector job creation is a top national priority, and has been expending tremendous taxpayer resources in that goal's name, in spite of our rapidly growing national debt.

The Keystone Pipeline will represent real private sector job creation, that is not dependent on taxpayer largess. The $7 billion private-sector investment in the pipeline will create an estimated 20,000 construction jobs, and support hundreds of thousands of other jobs throughout our economy.

The Keystone Pipeline will also increase the amount of oil that comes from Canada and can be refined into usable fuel here in the United States. As such, this project will become an important, reliable source of energy for our country. Ultimately, this will help relieve pressure on our rising gas and energy prices, which is a burden on already cash-strapped American families, as well as a drag on economic growth and job creation.

The economic benefits of the Keystone Pipeline are clear. Those who oppose the project do so on the ground that it has the potential to cause environmental harm. However, those concerns are overblown. They ignore the care with which we know that the Administration, and all relevant government agencies, will take to ensure that the Pipeline's development is conducted in accordance with existing environmental protection laws.

They also ignore the simple reality that Canada's oil sands are going to be developed one way or another. If the United States fails to proceed with the Keystone Pipeline project, then the project's sponsors will find another country with which to partner. This other country is very unlikely to be as diligent about protecting the environment as the United States.

Simply put, allowing the Keystone Pipeline project to proceed in the United States is a win for our economy and win for the environment. We urge you to approve the project expeditiously so that this important project can move forward and begin benefiting our nation's economy, and providing much needed jobs to out-of-work Americans.