Nebraska governor speaks in favor of expedited oil pipeline

One of the key local figures in the debate over the Keystone XL oil pipeline has spoken in favor of its expedited approval, according to the Winnipeg Free Press.

TransCanada's Keystone XL oil pipeline that is intended to span the middle of the country has turned into a major political battleground, with President Barack Obama insistent on delaying any final decision and congressional Republicans equally determined to force the issue.

But now one of the pipeline's early critics, Nebraska Governor Dave Heineman, has come down in favor of letting the project go forward.

"I certainly support expediting everything we're doing with the Keystone XL project," Heineman told reports.

Nebraska was a crucial opponent to the initial Keystone pipeline proposal because its planned route through the state's ecologically sensitive Sand Hills region. With TransCanada agreeing to choose a different route, however, the state's interests have shifted in favor of the added jobs the project could bring.

Nevertheless, The New York Times reports that the president has thus far stood firm against Republicans' efforts to force a decision, vaguely threatening to veto a tax cut measure that would require a decision on the oil pipeline.

Further information and projections about U.S. oil pipelines can be found at PennEnergy's Research area.

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