Obama administration set to “fast track” southern Keystone pipeline project
How do you know when a president’s energy message is falling flat?
When you see him trying to involve himself in something that doesn’t need him or his permission to proceed.
President Barack Obama plans to announce in Cushing, Oklahoma, on Thursday that his administration will expedite the permit for the southern half of the Keystone XL pipeline, a source familiar with the president’s announcement told CNN.
In January, the Obama administration denied a permit for the 1,700-mile-long Keystone XL oil pipeline, which would stretch from Canada’s tar sands development to the U.S. Gulf Coast. That decision was met by persistent Republican criticism that the president has not been doing everything possible to create jobs and combat high gas prices.
Late last month, TransCanada, the company behind the Keystone XL Pipeline, announced it would move forward with the process to build the southern half of the pipeline, which would begin in Cushing – the president’s third stop on his two-day energy tour. The White House praised the move.
Senior administration officials would not confirm the president’s plan to unveil the effort to cut red tape for the project, though one senior administration official acknowledged the need to deal with the glut of oil in Cushing, where oil from the Midwest hits a bottleneck as it is transported to the Gulf of Mexico.
This is much like his attempt to take credit for increased oil production when he had no hand in that increase, and, in fact, saw production increase despite his administration’s efforts to slow it on Federal lands.
This part of the Keystone pipeline is approved and ready to go. It has been. The company was merely waiting on the final go ahead for the portion that crosses the border from Canada. And while the portion being built from Cushing will be helpful, still missing is the portion that could be delivering up to 800,000 barrels a day from the oil sands of Canada. This, as usual, is a diversion.
Oh, and does anyone understand what “red-tape” the administration is talking about cutting? Why all the red tape this administration has strung all over the process since it has taken power, of course.
An amazing performance. Net gain – not much if anything in terms of total oil produced. The oil will get to market somewhat faster and certainly in a more environmentally safe way, but it still does nothing to increase the supply of safe oil that would actually lessen our dependence on oil from unfriendly countries.