API calls on DOS to grant Keystone XL permits

Christopher E. Smith
OGJ Pipeline Editor

HOUSTON, Jan. 27 -- The American Petroleum Institute called on the US Department of State to grant a pending permit for TransCanada Corp.’s Keystone XL crude oil pipeline project “as a matter of critical national interest.” API cited a report by the Canadian Energy Research Institute in stating construction of the pipeline would create more than 342,000 jobs in the US through 2015 and add an estimated $34 billion to US gross domestic product in 2015.

API also described environmental arguments against the pipeline as “overblown.” Since 1990 the industry has reduced oil sands carbon dioxide intensity by 39%, API said, citing the Canadian government. API also said that on a life cycle greenhouse gas-emission basis, oil derived from Canadian oil sands is comparable with other crudes refined in the US.

Turning to security of future US energy supplies, API noted that “if we don’t import oil sands crude, we will import crude from elsewhere, and other countries will imports [Canadian oil sands] crude.”

Cambridge Energy Research Associates released a study in May 2009 saying Canada could provide 37% of total US oil imports by 2035 (OGJ Online, May 25, 2009). The Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers estimates production from the Canadian oil sands could rise to about 3.5 million b/d by 2025 from about 1.4 million b/d in 2010. API estimated production by 2050 of 5.7 million b/d.

API said DOS’s review would involve making a national interest determination and would likely take 60-90 days following its publication of a final environmental impact statement. DOS released its draft EIS for Keystone XL in April 2010.

Contact Christopher E. Smith at chriss@ogjonline.com.

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