Tags: Keystone | oil | pipeline | jobs | Obama

Obama Criticizes Keystone Pipeline as Doing Little for Jobs

Thursday, 26 Feb 2015 07:39 PM

President Barack Obama criticized the Keystone XL pipeline as a boon to Canadian oil producers that gives short-shrift to American workers, saying the U.S. should focus on backing domestic energy projects.

In his first comments on the pipeline since vetoing a bill meant to force Keystone construction, Obama added an argument to his past skepticism of the project, saying the U.S. should focus on “American infrastructure for American jobs for American producers.”

“That’s something we very much support,” Obama said Thursday in an interview from Washington with WDAY television in Fargo, North Dakota.

“I’ve already said I’m happy to look at increasing pipeline production for U.S. oil,” Obama said. “But Keystone is for Canadian oil, sending it down to the Gulf. It bypasses the U.S.”

On Tuesday, Obama vetoed Republican-backed legislation that would have bypassed an administration review and cleared the way for the $8 billion TransCanada Corp. pipeline from Alberta, Canada, south through the U.S.

While backers have contended the project would create thousands of jobs, mostly during the construction phase, Obama said it probably would end up supplying 250 to 300 permanent jobs. He didn’t specify where those jobs would be.

White House press secretary Josh Earnest said at the time that Obama’s veto of the Keystone legislation was strictly about the legislation and not the project. It’s “certainly possible” that Obama would eventually approve the pipeline once a State Department review is completed, he said, without giving a timetable.

The pipeline would cross Montana, South Dakota and Nebraska on its way to the U.S. Gulf Coast.

North Dakota is at the center of a U.S. shale-oil boom, though that has subsided somewhat with a decline in global oil prices. The state’s jobless rate of 2.8 percent in December was the lowest in the U.S.

Obama has previously said he wouldn’t approve Keystone if the project was found to significantly add to the carbon pollution tied to global warming.

The WDAY interview was one of four with local television stations conducted in Washington as part of an administration effort to promote Obama’s trade agenda.

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President Barack Obama criticized the Keystone XL pipeline as a boon to Canadian oil producers that gives short-shrift to American workers, saying the U.S. should focus on backing domestic energy projects.In his first comments on the pipeline since vetoing a bill meant to...
Keystone, oil, pipeline, jobs, Obama
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2015-39-26
Thursday, 26 Feb 2015 07:39 PM
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