"We're complete fools" for scuttling the Keystone Pipeline because it would've brought energy security to the U.S., well-known oilman T. Boone Pickens told CNBC Wednesday.
The chairman of BP Capital Management spoke after the Obama administration rejected TransCanada's $7 billion pipeline project running from the western province of Alberta to Houston.
Proponents said the pipeline would have generated thousands of jobs jobs and lessened dependence on foreign oil while opponents said it would've increased the chance of spills in environmentally sensitive regions.
"You want energy security for America and this was one part of the puzzle," said Pickens, long a proponent of developing oil from American shale and the backer of legislation promoting using alternative fuel sources in big trucks.
"We treat Canada as if it’s a secondary state of the United States," Pickens said. "Canada is a sovereign country, and they have told you you either take the pipeline, we’ll make the oil available to you or we’re going west to British Columbia and they’ll export the oil to China."
"So you’re going to fool around here and that oil’s gonna be connected to China instead of the United States," he added. "I mean, we’re complete fools."