In January Obama decided to reject TransCanada’s application for a permit to build the Keystone XL pipeline to transport crude from the oil sands in Alberta, Canada to refineries in the United States. His administration declared that the deadline of February 21, by which they had to make the decision, did not give them enough time to appropriately evaluate the pipelines impact.
On Friday the State Department announced that TransCanada has re-submitted its application, and that they must now determine whether approving the new routes will be in the nation’s best interest.
They will consider “many factors, including energy security, health, environmental, cultural, economic, and foreign policy concerns,” and will then submit their answer by April 2013.
Russ Girling, the chief executive of TransCanada said that, “the multi-billion dollar Keystone XL pipeline project will reduce the United States’ dependence on foreign oil and support job growth by putting thousands of Americans to work.” He had a meeting behind closed doors with the assistant secretary of state, Kerri-Ann Jones, who oversaw the initial permit application.
Both Republicans and some union leaders urged Obama to approve the presidential permit.
John A. Boehner, the House Speaker, issued a statement saying, “Today there is just one person standing in the way of tens of thousands of new American jobs: President Obama. After nearly four years of review, delay, and politics, he is out of excuses for blocking this job-creating energy project any longer.”
Although environmentalists will continue to provide consistent pressure against the approval of the pipeline. Anthony Swift, an attorney in the Natural Resources Defense Council, blogged that, “tar sands are the world’s dirtiest form of oil, require a devastating process that lays waste to forests to extract tar sands bitumen, a thick low grade fuel that has significantly higher emissions than conventional crude. Tar sands pipelines also appear to pose higher risks — both in number and severity of pipeline spills.”
By. James Burgess of Oilprice.com