After seven long years, the White House has finally made it official. President Obama made a speech to the nation Friday morning explaining his decision to not move forward with the TransCanada Keystone pipeline. We are sure that the Government spent those seven years doing heavy due diligence on the process, since it was far quicker than the disastrous surge in Afghanistan, war in Libya, and our $100 million per moderate rebel program in Syria (just to name a few).
The truth is that no one expected the pipeline approved under the President’s current term. The only question was whether Obama would make a decision or leave it to the next president.
In his speech, cited the urgency of climate change as a primary reason behind his decision to reject the Keystone XL pipeline. He also noted that the pipeline has played an over-sized role in political discourse in the country.
Obama has focused on environmental issues during his second term, and had already noted misgivings about the pipeline as he pursued his environmental agenda to fight climate change. The president repeated the claims of critics that the Keystone pipeline would lead to relatively few jobs, not lower gasoline prices, and worsen the global warming problem.
More on rejection of Keystone pipeline
The Keystone XL pipeline was planned to move 700,000 plus barrels of oil a day Canada’s oil sands to Steele City, Nebraska, where Keystrone would have hooked up with existing pipelines to flow into Gulf Coast refineries. Another 100,000 barrels of crude would have come from North Dakota’s shale oil fields, for a total capacity of 830,000. Yje Keystone pipeline system would have spanned 1,700 miles and stretched across six states.
As President Obama touched on in his comments, over time Keystone became a symbol for both sides as much as a pipeline project, and became a rallying point for environmental activists who said it was an unnecessary environmental risk that highlighted our dependence on fossil fuels. Conservatives and Unions argued that critics of the Keystone pipeline were fighting against a worthwhile and job-creating project.
There had been a good bit of speculation recently that Obama might simply not make a decision at all. However, the president eventually came to believe a formal rejection would be an important part of his environmental legacy including new regulations on carbon emissions, fracking and water protection.
TransCanada Corp. first applied for a permit for the Keystone pipeline with the U.S. State Department (the agency tasked with reviewing cross-border pipeline projects) all the way back in September of 2008. However, it should be noted that the pipeline is needed far less than it was eight years ago with much lower oil prices due in part to the huge fracking boom.
To see how long the process was see some highlights on the chat below.
Canada has a new PM and so far the start between the two seems shaky. Trudeau pulled the Canadian air force out of ISIS operations right after the elections, and Trudeau also wanted the pipeline built.