Top officials in the key oil-producing province of Alberta, Canada are calling on the country’s government to take urgent action to save the expansion of the Keystone XL pipeline to the United States.
Earlier, Canadian and US media reported that President-elect Joe Biden would sign an executive order revoking the permit for expanding the Keystone XL pipeline on his first day in office. Works on extending the project had been halted under Barack Obama’s presidency, but restarted when President Donald Trump overturned his predecessor’s decision in 2019.
The latest news sent the shares of TC Energy, the Canadian energy major that operates the project, lower on Monday. Meanwhile, Alberta Premier Jason Kenney has urged Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to reach out to the incoming US administration before Biden takes the oath of office.
“This is the 11th hour and if this really is the top priority, as it should be, then we need the government of Canada to stand up for Canadian workers, for Canadian jobs, for the Canadian-US relationship, right now,” Kenney said, adding that Alberta’s financial exposure alone would exceed $783 million if the expansion doesn’t go ahead.
The official noted that Canada reserves the right to retain legal counsel and seek damages under international free trade agreements if the controversial pipeline project is scrapped.
“We hope President-elect Biden will show respect for Canada and will sit down and at the very least talk to us,” he said.
The Keystone XL pipeline is set to carry around 830,000 barrels of crude oil sands per day from the fields in Alberta to Nebraska in the US. Then, the oil would travel via existing routes to refineries at the Gulf of Mexico.
The $8 billion project has been strongly opposed by US landowners, Native American tribes and environmental groups, including Greenpeace. US Senator Bernie Sanders (D-Vermont) has also spoken against the idea of expanding the pipe’s capacities.
For more stories on economy & finance visit RT’s business section