The glow caused by burn-off of natural gas at oil drilling sites can be seen for miles around the oil field areas in North Dakota. (Michael S. Williamson/The Washington Post)


Mitt Romney announced his plan for North American energy independence today and, as Steven Mufson writes, the name of the plan was chosen purposely:

The “North” part is important, because the United States — even with surprising new production in places like North Dakota — can’t come close to achieving oil independence on its own.

The key to getting to “North American energy independence” is Canadian oil from Canada’s controversial, greenhouse gas-intensive oil sands — and the pipelines to bring that to the United States.

Mufson just returned from a month-long reporting trip along the proposed route of the Keystone XL Pipeline. See his full series here.