The Times News: Senator Crapo: Keystone Pipeline Good for America

By: Sen. Mike Crapo –

As active participants in the decisions made in Congress, Idahoans contact me with valuable input about the issues our country faces. Realizing that many may not have the chance to contact me, I post the top five issues of concern from Idahoans and my responses on my website. The top issues constituents have contacted me about recently include interest in the Keystone XL pipeline project. The following is my response:

Canadian oil company TransCanada has been working with the U.S. Department of State since 2008 to secure approval of the necessary permits to construct the Keystone XL pipeline, an international oil infrastructure project. The Keystone XL pipeline would be an extension of the existing Keystone pipeline and would transport Canadian sedimentary oil deposits in Alberta to refineries in Texas. Approval of this project was originally denied by the Obama Administration on January 18, 2012. However, TransCanada reapplied for the necessary permits shortly thereafter with a revised proposal, and the Department of State released a draft environmental impact statement as it reviewed TransCanada’s most recent application on March 1, 2013.

On Jan. 31, 2014, the State Department released its final environmental impact statement. Similar to the draft analysis, the final statement again concluded that the development of oil sands in Alberta, Canada, would not be significantly altered with the Keystone XL pipeline. A decision not to permit the pipeline would lead to the development and shipment of Canadian oil sands crude via alternative methods, including by rail and barge, to crude oil customers elsewhere.

S. 2280, a bill to approve the Keystone XL pipeline, was introduced by Sen. John Hoeven, R-N.D. This measure would have authorized TransCanada to construct and operate the pipeline, as well as the facilities needed to maintain it. On Nov. 18, the bill was brought to the floor of the Senate, where it was defeated by a vote of 59-41, with a three-fifths majority required for passage under the established rules…

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