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Oil Pipeline Stymied Despite Court Victory

Seems it's too late in the year to start building
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jun 8, 2019 10:30 AM CDT
In this file photo, a TransCanada's Keystone pipeline facility is seen in Hardisty, Alberta.   (Jeff McIntosh/The Canadian Press via AP, File)
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(Newser) – An appeals court has lifted a judge's injunction that blocked construction of the Keystone XL oil pipeline from Canada to the US, but the developer has said it's too late to begin work this year and environmental groups vowed to keep fighting it, the AP reports. A three-judge panel of the 9th US Circuit Court of Appeals on Thursday ordered dismissal of the lawsuit by environmental and Native American groups, saying President Trump had revoked a 2017 permit allowing the $8 billion pipeline to be built. Trump later issued a new permit, and the appellate judges agreed with Justice Department attorneys who say that nullifies the legal challenge involving environmental impacts. The pipeline would ship up to 830,000 barrels of crude oil daily from the tar sands of Alberta through Montana, South Dakota, and Nebraska.

The ruling Thursday was a victory for TC Energy, a Calgary, Alberta-based company that wants to build the line, though company officials have said it already missed the 2019 construction season because of court delays. "We are pleased with the ruling," TC Energy spokesman Matthew John said. "We look forward to advancing the project." Attorneys for the plaintiffs accuse Trump of trying to get around court rulings by issuing the new permit, which they say also is flawed. They have filed another, ongoing lawsuit to block the new presidential permit. "We shouldn't forget the underlying issue here—global warming," says activist attorney Stephan Volker. "We're trying to save the Earth. I wish the federal government would pay attention to the science and do its job."

(Read more TransCanada Keystone XL pipeline stories.)

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