Jobs, say hundreds of thousands of people. Pollution, say hundreds of thousands of others.
They say that's what a proposed oil pipeline would bring into the country, as it transports crude from massive deposits in Canadian tar sands to refineries and ports in the United States.
The Keystone XL pipeline has triggered a gush of comments from Americans for and against its construction. The State Department in Washington has received 1.2 million since early March, when it came out in support of the project.
It began publishing them on its website Thursday. The first 100,000 appeared this week, and the department plans to publish a similar number of comments every week, according to a statement.
The comments are directed at a document the State Department published in March to justify its approval of the Keystone XL in light of what it considered environmentally sound planning.
The Environmental Protection Agency strongly disagreed and batted down State Department's draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement, giving it the equivalent of a "C-" grade as an environmental document.
Environmentally concerned citizens have piled in on top of the guardians of America's ecology and appear to have turned in most of the comments arriving at the State Department.
Citizens highlighting the possible economic benefits have joined the fight, siding with the pipeline's proponents.
Obama's rock and hard place
The politics of oil, jobs and ecology have put President Obama between a rock and hard place, as the ultimate decision to permit the Keystone XL's construction rests on his shoulders alone.
Proponents of the Keystone XL pipeline, many of them Republican lawmakers the president is seeking compromises from, say it will give America energy independence, thousands of jobs and important industrial infrastructure, and won't cost taxpayers a dime.
Among its detractors are some of Obama's traditional allies, who were instrumental in getting him elected. They say the massive pipe is dangerous, inherently filthy and must be stopped.
State Department vs. EPA
In its lengthy study, the State Department, headed by John Kerry, weighed in on the side of the proponents.
But after reviewing it, the EPA sent a letter to high officials at the State Department, blasting the environmental impact statement.
The environmental agency rated it as EO-2, a bureaucratic moniker for "Environmental Objections-Insufficient Information," a below-average grade on the EPA's scale.
The Canadian crude in its raw form is mixed with sand. Extracting the oil and transporting it requires more energy than pumping crude out of a well. Thrusting it through long pipes increases the energy consumption.
That higher energy use leads to greater greenhouse gas emissions, an increase of "18.7 million metric tons (20 million tons) C02 ... per year when compared to an equal amount of U.S. average crudes," the EPA said.
The State Department's assessment concludes that just as much Canadian oil will make it to market, by train if necessary, if no pipeline is built, therefore there would be little additional ecological impact.
The EPA argued that "while informative," that train of thought is out of date.
In comes public opinion
Many of the U.S. citizens' comments arriving at the State Department are duplicated form letters sent or signed by multiple commenters. They are associated with organizations that usually propagate one of two polarized arguments.
In its form letters, members of the group Action Tar bemoan "the killing a vast forests, to the contamination of terrestrial, aquatic, and atmospheric ecosystems which we all depend on."
But like most of the ecological protesters, it drives home the aspect of climate change, caused by "a new super greenhouse gasoline." Additional boosts to climate change also make up the core of the EPA's objections.
Form letters from proponent groups counter with arguments of economic urgency. "... approve this project. Keystone XL will ensure American energy security and create jobs and economic opportunity in Nebraska."