Congress Needs To Approve The Keystone XL Pipeline Project

TransCanada Works to Keep Project Alive After Administration Denies It

WASHINGTON – Senator John Hoeven today said he’s pleased that TransCanada is working to keep the Keystone XL pipeline project alive by beginning construction on a leg that will connect Cushing, Okla. to the Gulf Coast, but that Congress needs to approve the full project because after more than three years of study, the Obama Administration has denied it. 

The Keystone XL pipeline is a shovel-ready, $7 billion, privately-funded infrastructure project that will carry Canadian oil from the province of Alberta in Canada to the United States Gulf Coast. It is positioned to create thousands of jobs, reduce dependence on Middle Eastern oil and increase North American energy independence, Hoeven said. 

“We’re pleased that at least one leg of this project will begin, but the problem is not solved,” Hoeven said. “This partial construction will not add one drop of oil into the supply for American consumers and businesses, and it will not help hold down the cost of gasoline at the pump, which is currently at record levels for this time of the year. The reality is that the company’s announcement yesterday that it will reapply for the entire project requires them to start over again after three years of review.” 

TransCanada has been working for three years to build and operate the Keystone XL pipeline, which will transport an additional 830,000 barrels of oil per day to U.S. refineries, including 100,000 barrels a day from the Bakken region of North Dakota and Montana. 

Hoeven and a group of U.S. Senators are working to approve the pipeline through Congress’s authority enumerated in the Commerce Clause of the U.S. Constitution. The legislation allows the company to move forward with construction of the pipeline in the United States while the state of Nebraska works to determine an alternative route. 

The Keystone XL pipeline project has been under review for more than three years, but President Obama rejected it in January saying the 60-day provision introduced by Hoeven, Lugar and Vitter in the payroll tax cut extension bill passed in December didn’t give him enough time to review the project, even though there was no time limit on the State Department’s ability to review the Nebraska portion of the project.