A number of media outlets, including The New York Times, are reporting that President Obama is announcing on Friday his decision to deny the construction permits sought by the Canadian firm wanting to build the crude-carrying pipeline north-to-south across the country.
“President Obama’s denial of the proposed 1,179-mile pipeline, which would have carried 800,000 barrels a day of carbon-heavy petroleum from the Canadian oil sands to the Gulf Coast, comes as he is seeking to build an ambitious legacy on climate change,” the Times article notes.
TransCanada first sought the required presidential permit to build in 2008. The request has sparked passionate debate among presidential hopefuls and inspired a wave of environmental activism as well as a renewed push for pro-energy policies.
Reacting to Obama’s turning thumbs-down on Keystone, Sen. Pat Roberts — Republican of Kansas, one of the states the pipeline would likely have crossed — declared that the White House is out of touch with America, tweeting, “Yet again, the administration shows it no longer cares what Congress or the American people have to say.”
In February, President Obama vetoed a bill that Congress sent to his desk to approve the Keystone XL pipeline’s construction, saying that the proposal attempted “to circumvent longstanding and proven processes for determining whether or not building and operating a cross-border pipeline serves the national interest.”
And only a few days ago, Obama rejected an appeal from TransCanada to put the construction request on hold, presumably until a future administration could give it a fresh look.