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Keystone XL Pipeline Fails to Pass U.S. Senate

Keystone XL PipelineThe controversial pipeline failed to pass the Senate on Tuesday, by one vote. The vote comes after the House voted to approve the bill last week.

The southern route for the pipeline, which goes from Cushing, Oklahoma to the U.S. Gulf Coast, has already been built and is flowing. TransCanada, the pipeline’s owner, is waiting on approval to build the northern route which crosses the U.S.- Canadian border.

Proponents of the bill say it will create around 42,000 jobs. However, this number includes many indirect jobs and most are temporary. It will only create around 50 permit jobs.


Concerns surrounding the pipeline include many environmental ones. The pipeline will go over the Ogallala Aquifer, which provides drinking water for people in eight states, including Oklahoma. It also provides as much as 30% of the nation’s ground water used for irrigation.

Before oil even started flowing in the southern route of the Keystone XL, TransCanada had to repair 125 dents and sags in the pipeline.

Even if the vote had passed, experts believed President Obama would veto the bill. The Obama administration had delayed its review of the pipeline back in April until a lawsuit in Nebraska, addressing questions about a state law dealing with the pipeline’s route in the state, is resolved.

“It certainly is a piece of legislation that the president doesn’t support because the president believes this is something that should be determined through the State Department and the process that is in place to evaluate projects like this,” said White House spokesman Josh Earnest.

Photo credit: shannonpatrick17

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Lisa Sharp is the founder of Green Oklahoma. She is passionate about the environment and improving Oklahoma for future generations. She also writes on her personal blog Retro Housewife Goes Green.
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