Keystone Pipeline Still Waiting On US Approval

Brian Hicks

Written By Brian Hicks

Posted September 8, 2011

The Keystone XL pipeline expected to run from Canadian tar sands to the Gulf Coast is still waiting on U.S. federal government approval.

There is growing political and public opposition against the 1,700-mile pipeline. There still appears to be the possibility that the pipeline may obtain approval though.

Last month, the U.S. State Department said in a preliminary report the Keystone XL pipeline, to be operated by Calgary-based TransCanada Corp. (NYSE: TRP), would pose “no significant impacts” to most resources along its proposed corridor if the company follows through on environmental protection measures.

Canada’s minister, responsible for the oil sands, remains confident the Obama administration will grant permits allowing construction of the Keystone pipeline to begin.

Joe Oliver, Canada’s Natural Resource Minister, told reporters “We are increasingly optimistic about the likelihood of a presidential permit, which will be based on … the national interest.”

The State Department’s study found the pipeline could haul 1.25 million barrels of Canadian crude daily, by 2030. Initially, the pipeline could move about 700,000 barrels of oil day, which would double the capacity of TransCanada’s existing pipeline from western Canada that began moving crude to the U.S. last year.

Despite the research conducted and the mass amount of product that can be moved, many people and environmental groups still fear the negative impact the pipeline could have. Moving oil is extremely risky and some influential people have stepped in to speak out against the pipeline.

Nebraska governor Dave Heineman and former U.S. vice-president Al Gore have voiced their opinions against the construction of the pipeline. Even the Dalai Lama and Archbishop Desmond Tutu released a letter on Wednesday encouraging President Obama to deny the permit because it could bring harm to farms, water supplies, and wildlife.

The State Department is expected to issue a final decision by the end of 2011.

That’s all for now,


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