After on Tuesday President Trump signed executive orders that put Keystone XL and Dakota Access back on the table, TransCanada was quick to submit a new application for a permit that would clear the way for the construction of its Keystone XL pipeline. The State Department has 60 days after final application to grant or deny the permit, as per Trump’s instructions.
The Keystone XL pipeline was to transport a daily average of 800,000 barrels of heavy Canadian crude from Alberta to U.S refineries. It sparked an outrage among environmentalists, however, that led to a veto of the project from the last president. At the time, Barack Obama said the project raised too much environmental concern while its economic benefits were uncertain. Protests against the project have already started anew.
TransCanada argues that the Keystone XL project will create thousands of jobs and boost tax benefits for the communities along its 1,179-mile route. In its press release on the submission of the new application, CEO Russ Girling was quoted as raising this number to “tens of thousands” and noting that it will help ensure the U.S.’ energy security. Related: Russia Makes A Move On Asian Oil Markets As OPEC Cuts
Data from the State Department, however, counters these “tens of thousands” of jobs with calculations that the permanent jobs to be created as a result of the project will only come up to 35. Still the State Department’s 2014 report acknowledges that the project will create a total of 42,100 year-long job positions.
Job creation aside, TransCanada might run into some cost problems with the project because of another document Trump signed this week: a memorandum that requires all pipelines that are to be built, retrofitted or repaired in the U.S. to be made from locally manufactured materials. The problem is that TransCanada has already bought a lot of the materials it would need for Keystone XL, from “North America”.
By Irina Slav for Oilprice.com
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