WASHINGTON—Canada’s stalled Keystone XL pipeline project is poised to become one of the first orders of business in the new U.S. Congress, where Tuesday’s Republican romp could end up impacting several cross-border industries.
There are hopes in Ottawa that the midterm results could spur movement on the controversial Canada-U.S. bitumen pipeline, as well as major free-trade negotiations and perhaps even meat-labelling rules that have hurt Canada.
Virtually every Republican asked about post-election plans has already mentioned Keystone XL as a top priority for the next Congress, a development that would be as detested by the environmental movement as it would be celebrated by oil industry supporters.
One of the biggest pipeline-boosters is Mitch McConnell—the next Senate majority leader and, arguably, now the most powerful member of the U.S. Congress.
“We need to embrace the energy revolution going on in our country and promote it. It’s hugely advantageous to America, not only in the realm of energy independence, but employment,” the Kentucky Republican said, referring to the long-delayed project.
“The employment figures connected with Keystone are stunning if we would just get going.”
In fact, the president played down the project during a wide-ranging news conference at the White House.
The pipeline is undergoing a regulatory review, and is still the subject of a court fight in Nebraska over the route, he repeated. He listed conditions that are guiding his thinking about the project: Will it create jobs? Will it be good for Americans, and their pocketbooks? Will it really bring down gas prices? And will it affect greenhouse-gas emissions?
Obama has expressed skepticism in the past about the job-creation potential, and on Wednesday he appeared to question the project’s overall significance to Americans.
Full article: Canadian Oil Likely an Early Item on the Agenda for the New US Congress (The Epoch Times)