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Keystone XL Pipeline Approval taking Five Times Longer than Average


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Despite the White House's insistence it's simply following the standard process, an August 12 Associated Press (AP) story reported, federal review of the proposed Keystone XL oil pipeline from Canada to Texas has dragged on for nearly seven years, more than five times the average for pipeline applications.


President George W. Bush issued an executive order in 2004, requiring oil pipelines crossing U.S. borders to get a presidential approval. A formal application to build a pipeline sets off a government-wide review coordinated by the State Department. An AP examination of every cross-border pipeline application since 2004 shows the government has taken an average of 478 days — less than a year and a half — to approve or reject every application except for the Keystone XL. By contrast, TransCanada Corp, who first applied to build the estimated $8 billion pipeline in 2008, has waited nearly seven years for a ruling.


Bush Policy Meant to Expedite Pipeline Approvals


Former Bush White House officials who helped develop the policy say the revamped process was intended to expedite permits for major public works projects. The AP quotes Robert McNally, one of President Bush's top energy advisors, saying, approving a pipeline permit "was seen as the most routine, boring thing in the world." The shortest approval under Bush took less than four months.Scissors-32x32.png

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