Trump greenlights Keystone XL pipeline, but other obstacles loom

"The presidential permit for the Keystone XL is a welcome step forward to securing improved energy infrastructure in Nebraska and nationally, while also creating jobs and ensuring our energy independence", Ricketts said in a statement Friday.

"After many years of unfortunate delays and partisan posturing, Keystone XL pipeline finally got the green light it has long deserved", said U.S. Chamber of Commerce President Thomas Donohue. "It's gonna be an incredible pipeline, the greatest technology known to man, or woman, and frankly we're very proud of it".

"After delaying the common-sense, shovel-ready Keystone XL pipeline for eight years, the Obama administration put politics ahead of job creation and energy development", says Thune". Keystone would strengthen US energy security by increasing access to Canada's "dependable supply of crude oil", said the State Department.

TransCanada, the Calgary-based company that first applied for a presidential permit in 2008, called the decision a "significant milestone".

Environmentalists have said the project would be an environmental and climate change disaster.

"By reducing the amount of crude oil now traveling through our towns and upon our waterways by train, truck and barge, pipelines minimize the potential impacts to our air and water quality".

The pipeline has found some resistance from land owners and groups in Nebraska which opposed the pipeline.

The line would bring more than 800,000 barrels of heavy crude per day from Alberta to Nebraska.

Need help understanding what Devin Nunes did?
Cohen-Watnick is a former Defense Intelligence Agency official who was originally brought to the White House by Michael T. Nunes both served on the Trump transition team.

The State Department, responsible for reviewing the project because it crosses an worldwide border, determined that building it serves USA national interests.

Speaking from the Oval Office, Trump officially announced the approval shortly after the State Department issued TransCanada's permit, making good on one of his campaign promises. Transcanada has to file its pipeline route plans with the state's Public Service Commission, which is required to hold public hearings on the proposal.

But Republican President Donald Trump supports Keystone and, days after he took office in January, ordered its construction. They've pledged to deploy a variety of strategies - including litigation and civil disobedience - to derail the pipeline, as they did during the Obama administration.

Environmental groups are wary that the pipeline will rely on Canadian oil sands, a dirtier form of oil that releases more greenhouse gases than standard oil extraction.

"The Keystone XL pipeline is the type of job creating infrastructure project that America needs", said Mr. Boozman.

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, who was formerly the chief executive of ExxonMobil, recused himself from the decision. The decision ended almost a decade-long dispute that allows the oil pipeline to be built from Canada to America's heartland.

Right now, the Keystone Pipeline system stretches more than 2,600 miles from Hardisty, Alberta, Canada east into Manitoba and then down to Texas, according to parent company TransCanada.

The pipeline's opponents contend the jobs will be minimal and short-lived, and say the pipeline won't help the US with energy needs because the oil is destined for export.

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