Did the State Dept. set its Keystone XL assessment up for failure in court?

Was the EIS sabotaged by Foggy Bottom?

Despite all the enviro hyperventilation about the State Department’s preliminary green lighting of the Keystone XL pipeline, rest assured that there is much more to the story.

Should Obama okay the pipeline, which he is under great pressure to do, the enviros will sue (and don’t be surprised if they win) on the grounds that the State Department’s Environmental Impact Statement is in some way deficient under the National Environmental Policy Act.

So Obama will get political credit for approving the pipeline, but construction won’t start.

This wouldn’t be the first time that a fossil fuel development project was thwarted by a wink-and-a-nod.

12 thoughts on “Did the State Dept. set its Keystone XL assessment up for failure in court?”

  1. yup, they sure did. They have probably already tipped greenies how to petition for a restraining order.

    (if they were the EPA they would GIVE THEM A GRANT to do it, but State isn’t a funding agency)

  2. As someone in the domestic oil drilling business, I oppose the XL on selfish grounds. The Cushing to the Gulf leg is already approved and that will help bring WTI up to whatever the Brent price is when complete. Good for me, bad for the rest of us. But bringing Canadian oil to the Gulf via the northern XL will likely lower oil prices (but the Canadians will benefit because they’re getting VERY low prices for their blocked crude NOW). Bad for me, good for the rest of us.
    And just think: I haven’t contributed a dime to any politician!!

  3. You sound like the guy whose name appears in the bottom right corner of my checks. He believes energy prices should be high because the company’s revenues are directly proportional to the price of energy.

  4. All US agencies are subject to the Equal Access to Justice Act and therefore, State will have to pay the lawyers of the Green Left if they file a lawsuit against State and ‘substantially prevail’.

  5. In this era of global commerce, the price of oil is set on international markets. To make the price of oil go down, Keystone will have to deliver enough oil to market to drive *world* prices down. That’s a tall order. The only way to ensure that North American oil prices are directly proportional to how much oil North America produces is to forbid the export of oil. We’re not yet to the point of oil self-sufficiency (though we could be), so scratch that idea.

  6. What you say is true. But as the Keystone Pipeline is to deliver the oil to refineries, it will be a captive supply. Hence cost of the oil will be subject to contract agreement. It MIGHT result in cheaper gasoline. Might not, as you say. Depends on how the whole deal is set up. I should think building a giant pipeline would require parties to have beneficial positions, else why would refiners agree to receive the oil?

  7. A structure that ensures profits on cheaper oil and cheaper gasoline is required to maintain enthusiasm for Keystone, and you can be sure the accountants have looked at this issue *very* thoroughly.

  8. With the Panama Canal’s widening set to be complete next year, the Far East becomes a market for Gulf Coast exports. Mexico states it will open up the petro sector to private companies in order to increase production. The hundred-years of depending on the Middle East could be drawing to a close.

  9. I haven’t heard anything about the quality of the study, but the legal system is set up to favor infinite delay regardless of the study. Take a page from the paralysis of nuclear energy and that sea barrier from the Lyndon Johnson administration that would have prevented the flooding during Katrina. The law is the oldest environmental activist profession (not to suggest an association with prostitution or anything – much).

  10. “The legal system is set up to favor infinite delay regardless of the study.”

    This. The legal system is set up to remunerate lawyers. Once approved, their cash spigot is turned off.

    Delay = $$$

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