Reports: Biden plans to nix Keystone XL pipeline on Day One

Several outlets are reporting that President-elect Joe Biden has plans to put an end to the construction of the Keystone XL pipeline.

According to Politico, a spokesperson for the Biden transition team has declined to comment on reports that the incoming president plans to cancel a “cross-border permit” for the pipeline, which is owned by TC Energy, “on his first day in office.”

Biden plans to ax pipeline

Once constructed, the pipeline would run from Alberta, Canada to the state of Nebraska, where oil would then be sent “through existing pipelines to refineries in the Gulf of Mexico,” Breitbart reports.

It’s a project that has been in the works for some time — but not without controversy.

According to Breitbart, “[t]he project passed environmental reviews under the Obama administration, but was stalled due to opposition from environmental groups.” It picked up speed again when President Donald Trump took office in 2017.

Through an executive order, Trump gave organizers the green-light to continue pursuing permits for the project on his third day on the job.

But throughout his candidacy, Biden promised to put an end to the Keystone XL project “for good,” as Breitbart notes — and now, it looks like he’s going to be following through on that.

Progressives are on board – but is Canada?

The move was reportedly not mentioned by incoming White House Chief of Staff Ron Klain in a Saturday memo outlining a long list of executive actions Biden has planned for his first 10 days as president, but Klain did say the Democrat wants to work to “change the course of COVID-19, combat climate change, promote racial equity and support other underserved communities, and rebuild our economy in ways that strengthen the backbone of this country,” The Hill reported.

It’s a sentiment that resonates with supporters of the progressive “Green New Deal,” like Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders.

“The Keystone pipeline is [and] always has been a disaster,” the twice-failed Democratic presidential candidate said in a tweet Sunday. “I’m delighted that Joe Biden will cancel the Keystone permit on his first day in office. With all of the major crises facing America, we must never lose sight of the most existential threat facing our planet: climate change.

But not everyone seems to be on board. While she wouldn’t confirm reports of Biden’s planned executive action, Canada’s ambassador to the U.S., Kirsten Hillman, told Politico that “the Government of Canada continues to support the Keystone XL project.”

“Keystone XL fits within Canada’s climate plan. It will also contribute to U.S. energy security and economic competitiveness,” Hillman said. It’s a shame that as of Wednesday, we’ll no longer have a president who agrees.

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