Keystone XL pipeline to get U.S. approval by Monday: report

The Keystone XL pipeline will get the approval of the Trump administration by Monday, according to a published report from Politico.

The report, which cites two unnamed sources, said Tom Shannon — who is undersecretary in the State Department — plans to sign a cross-border permit for the pipeline on or before Monday.

That is the last day in a 60-day timeline set in motion by U.S. President Donald Trump back in January, when he issued an executive order that invited Calgary-based TransCanada Corp. to reapply for a presidential permit. The order also instructed the U.S. State Department to “take all actions necessary and appropriate to facilitate its expeditious review.” 

The 1,900 kilometre, 90 centimetre diameter pipeline would bring about 830,000 barrels of oil a day from Hardisty, Alta., through Montana and South Dakota to Steele City, Neb. There it would tie into the existing Keystone pipeline, which carries oil to Illinois and Texas.

“We do anticipate a decision by the State Department during the 60 days they have been given,” TransCanada spokesman Terry Cunha told CBC News in an email statement. “At the moment, we continue to work with the administration on our presidential permit application.”

Approval from the U.S. government is not the final hurdle for the project. It still needs to win approval in Nebraska. A decision from the Nebraska Public Service Commission is expected in late September, Politico said.

The project also needs approval from landowners in the state.

Keystone XL was originally rejected by then-president Barack Obama, who turned it down in Nov. 2015 saying it “will not serve the national interests of the United States.” 

Keystone pipeline

The Keystone XL pipeline would bring oil from Hardisty, Alta., to Steele City, Neb. (Canadian Press)

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