Obama Rejects Keystone XL Pipeline

President Barack Obama today rejected Canadian midstream company TransCanada's proposal to build the 830,000 b/d Keystone XL pipeline, saying shipping Canadian heavy crude to the US "would not increase America's energy security."

Ending a drama that has played out since 2008, Obama announced that the State Department had concluded that allowing TransCanada to build the $8bn project to transport crude from Alberta's oil sands and the Bakken formation to Nebraska would not be in the US' national interest.

In a statement at the White House, flanked by vice president Joe Biden and secretary of state John Kerry, Obama called the pipeline a "campaign cudgel by both parties" that "would not make a meaningful contribution to our economy."

The State Department has been reviewing the permit application because the pipeline would have crossed the US-Canadian border. If approved, the project would have linked up with an existing pipeline network feeding refineries along the US Gulf coast.

Obama pointed to US gasoline prices, which have already fallen to less than $2/USG in many markets.

The announcement comes as Obama is expected to join other world leaders in Paris next month to try to hammer out a new climate agreement to replace the Kyoto Protocol and rein in greenhouse gas emissions. Obama said the US is taking the lead on addressing climate change and said approving the pipeline project "would have undercut that global leadership."

Earlier this week, the State Department rebuffed TransCanada's request to pause review of the project until state regulators in Nebraska had approved the pipeline route in the state. The delay request was widely viewed in Washington as an attempt to wait out Obama's administration, in hopes a more industry-friendly candidate might win the White House next year. TransCanada rejects that assertion.

Source: Argus Media
Date: Nov 6, 2015