President-elect Joe Biden is planning to cancel the permit for the $9 billion dollar Keystone XL pipeline project as one of his first acts in office, and perhaps as soon as his first day.
Biden had vowed to scrap the pipeline’s presidential permit if elected.
Keystone XL is the proposed 4th phase of the Keystone system, which has been carrying crude from Alberta, Canada, to the U-S Gulf Coast for a decade. The XL phase has been strongly opposed by environmentalists since first proposed in June 2008.
The original line comes down the east side of the Dakotas and Nebraska while the XL route would be on west side of North Dakota, then cut diagonally cross South Dakot and Nebraska to join the existing route in southeast Nebraska.
President Barack Obama denied a permit for the project to cross the US-Canada border in 2015, but President Donald Trump issued a permit in 2017. A federal judge halted the permit, ruling the government failed to do an adequate environmental review.
Trump then rescinded the permit, making the legal challenges moot, and issued a virtually identical one that environmentalists also took to court. That allowed the border crossing to be completed last year with pumping stations built in the U-S.
Construction is well underway in Canada and Alberta Premier Jason Kenney said on Twitter that cancellation would eliminate jobs, weaken U.S.-Canada relations and undermine American national security by making the US more dependent on OPEC.
Pipeline developer TC Energy, formerly TransCanada, says Keystone XL would achieve net zero emissions when it enters service, which could be by 2023, and pledged to use only renewable energy sources by 2030 in a bid to win Biden’s support.