Friday, February 21, 2014

Nebraska Court Rejects the Keystone XL Pipeline

A Nebraska court has struck a blow to the northern leg of the Keystone XL. On Wednesday February 19, District Judge Stephanie F. Stacy struck down a state law that supported the pipeline saying it violated the state's constitution. This decision that could significantly delay the building of the $5.3 billion project as there is now no approved route across Nebraska. TransCanada, the builders of the  pipeline, has already been forced to find an alternative route around the Nebraska Sandhills, a sensitive habitat.

While environmentalists and the landowners that filed the claim are very happy this is only the first round. Nebraska governor Heineman and the other defendants immediately appealed the ruling.

Despite TransCanada's claim that the pipeline will provide a secure supply of crude oil for America, the truth is that most of this oil is destined for export. Citizens are also concerned that an oil spill could contaminate drinking water in underground aquifers.

TransCanada has already been forced to find an alternative route around the Nebraska Sandhills, a sensitive habitat.

This ruling eradicates the power of eminent domain to acquire land which Governor Heineman gave to TransCanada. However, the Nebraska legislature could go back and pass another law which would once again give the state the power to determine the route of the pipeline.

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