LINCOLN, Nebraska (Reuters) – Nebraska regulators on Tuesday denied TransCanada Corp’s request to amend its route software for the proposed Keystone XL pipeline via the U.S. state, a possible setback for the corporate because it seeks to go off authorized challenges.
The Nebraska Public Service Fee (PSC) issued an approval for the road in late November, eradicating what seemed to be the final large regulatory impediment for the long-delayed undertaking, which has been backed by U.S. President Donald Trump.
However the fee’s approval was not for the route TransCanada had singled out in its software. As a substitute, the fee authorised an alternate route that shifts it nearer to an current pipeline right-of-way down the japanese facet of the state, a transfer opponents of the pipeline have stated violates state statutes.
TransCanada filed a movement final month with the fee searching for permission to retrospectively amend the route software, a transfer that an organization official stated was meant to stop lawsuits that would delay the undertaking.
The fee on Tuesday voted 5-Zero in opposition to the movement.
TransCanada stated in an announcement that it will evaluate the choice to find out subsequent steps for Keystone XL, however added that it believed the undertaking remained economically viable.
“It is very important do not forget that this undertaking has widespread help throughout the U.S. and Canadian federal governments, in addition to state officers in Montana, South Dakota and Nebraska,” the corporate stated.
Ken Winston, a lawyer for environmental group the Sierra Membership, stated he noticed the ruling as a win for pipeline opponents.
“The truth that they’re having to think about an alternate route and that their movement was denied continues to make it extra sophisticated for TransCanada. And any time it’s extra sophisticated, that’s a victory for us,” he stated.
Attorneys for landowners opposing the pipeline additionally stated Tuesday’s ruling represented a setback for the undertaking.
“The PSC clearly acknowledges that it voted on a route that was not within the TransCanada software as a route it needed authorised,” stated legal professional David Domina. “TransCanada is aware of it’s now able the place it can not go ahead and not using a large danger of reversal on attraction,” he stated.
TransCanada shares had been down 20 cents to $61.61 in noon buying and selling.
The proposed Keystone XL, which might run about 1,180 miles (1,899 km) from Hardisty, Alberta, to Steele Metropolis, Nebraska, has been a lightning rod of controversy because it was proposed a decade in the past, with environmentalists making it an emblem of their broader struggle in opposition to fossil fuels and international warming.
Trump handed TransCanada a federal allow for the pipeline in March as a part of a broader agenda to spice up the vitality sector and create jobs. That reversed a choice by former President Barack Obama in 2015 to dam the undertaking on environmental grounds.
Reporting by Kevin O’Hanlon; Writing by Richard Valdmanis, Enhancing by Rosalba O’Brien
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