Senators urge Obama to promptly approve Keystone XL pipeline

A bipartisan group of US senators urged US President Barack Obama to quickly approve the proposed Keystone XL pipeline project now that Nebraska Gov. Dave Heineman (R) has approved its new route across the state (OGJ Online, Jan. 22, 2013).

Their letter to the president attracted 53 signatures, representing a majority of the Senate, in less than a day after Heineman announced his decision, Energy and Natural Resources Committee Ranking Minority Member Lisa Murkowski (R-Alas.), Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.), and others who signed the letter told reporters.

They reminded Obama in the letter that he directed federal agencies on Mar. 22, 2012, to accelerate approval of vital energy infrastructure projects such as Keystone XL. “We strongly urge you to direct the [US Department of State] to accelerate the supplemental environmental impact statement and quickly complete the national interest determination,” the senators said.

Both of North Dakota’s senators—Republican John Hoeven and Democrat Heidi Heitkamp—and Sens. Mark Pryor (D-Ark.), Mary Landrieu (D-La.), David Vitter (R-La.), John Cornyn (R-Tex.), and Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) also attended the news conference.

Contact Nick Snow at nicks@pennwell.com.

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