State Dept: Oh man, this shutdown really impaired our Keystone pipeline review process, you know

posted at 1:21 pm on October 17, 2013 by Erika Johnsen

I’m wondering if the State Department official managed to get this out with straight face. Via Reuters:

The U.S. government shutdown is making it harder for the State Department to review the Keystone XL pipeline permit process, a State Department official said on Thursday, which could delay President Barack Obama’s decision on the project. …

The State Department has multi-year funding, which allows it to continue work on the environmental review. But the federal government has been in a partial shutdown since October 1; officials at other agencies, including the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Interior, are unable to weigh in on the review as they did before the shutdown. …

The official would not say how long any delay on the application process would last. TransCanada initially applied for a permit more than five years ago.

Well, the administration has managed to whip up plenty of exaggerated and/or utterly fake reasons why the Keystone pipeline’s northern extension should most definitely have been delayed until now; why not seize on yet another fake reason when it comes readily along? It’s almost laughable, the ways in which they’re still bravely pretending that they have anything left to “deliberate” over except the eventual and inevitable political fallout, except that the jobs, wealth, and pipeline infrastructure updates on which we’re currently missing out aren’t funny at all.

Anyhow. That was a snippet of news I missed in the midst of the shutdown last week, and the word out now is that TransCanada is anticipating a decision from the Obama administration this spring, via Bloomberg:

TransCanada Corp. (TRP), Canada’s second-largest pipeline company by market value, expects a U.S. ruling on the Keystone XL pipeline in the first quarter of 2014.

The current U.S. government shutdown isn’t causing a “material delay” in the State Department’s review of the $5.3 billion pipeline, Alex Pourbaix, TransCanada’s president of energy and oil pipelines, said today at a conference in Calgary, where the company is based. TransCanada expects a final environmental impact statement from the department “this fall,” he said. …

U.S. mid-term elections next year pose a larger threat to a Keystone XL decision than the U.S. government shutdown, Pourbaix said.

“Obviously this is a political file,” Pourbaix said. “Sometimes big important issues get tabled in elections.”

I would suggest to TransCanada that they get used to disappointment, except, oh wait — they already are.


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Yes, far be it for this Administration to not do something based on blatant political shenanigans and actually do something that would not only be pro-US, pro-business, and pro-consumer, but also provide assistance and good will to our number 1 trading partner.

Perhaps at this point of the President’s second term, Canada will replace Great Britain as the friend / ally to piss off.

Athos on October 17, 2013 at 1:29 PM

You teatards ruined five years of careful deliberation! Now we have to start all over!

HitNRun on October 17, 2013 at 1:30 PM

I would suggest to TransCanada that they say “screw it” and arrange to sell the oil to China. Not the desired outcome, but at some point they have to do what they have to do.

Meanwhile Warren Buffet will continue to make money had-over-fist shipping the oil via the Burlington Northern railroad.

iurockhead on October 17, 2013 at 1:30 PM

Things got so bad, we had to use the pipeline application forms for toilet paper. So sorry, pipeline folks…

Marcola on October 17, 2013 at 1:31 PM

So tired of both parties working in concert to screw us. It’s a shell game.

njrob on October 17, 2013 at 1:31 PM

So tired of both parties working in concert to screw us. It’s a shell game.

njrob on October 17, 2013 at 1:31 PM

Yeah! So, why are the Rebublicans trying to stop the pipeline?

Wait, what?

iurockhead on October 17, 2013 at 1:33 PM

Sure, it did, but continue to kowtow to the miniscule amount of Americans that oppose the pipeline.

Everyone else is an ‘extremist’ and ‘suicide bomber,’ ya know?

Resist We Much on October 17, 2013 at 1:35 PM

Final Approval? I’m betting on January 2017. Right after Jug Ears leaves office.

But that’s supposing that people get smart and don’t elect another Democratic president.

GarandFan on October 17, 2013 at 1:44 PM

State Dept: Oh man, this intentionally ignoring the Keystone pipeline review has really impaired our Keystone pipeline review process, you know. But fortunately, that’s what we wanted.

Flange on October 17, 2013 at 1:46 PM

pretending that they have anything left to “deliberate” over except the eventual and inevitable political fallout,

So they’re debating between slim and none? Face it, most don’t pay attention, most of the rest think it’s old news, and half of what’s left after that agree with Obama.

Fenris on October 17, 2013 at 2:04 PM

So the shutdown meant they had to ox-walk even slower?

Or maybe take more coffee breaks.

Oh, right it’s State.

Make that pot breaks. While chanting Tibetan mantras under a portrait of Che’!*

(*I always add the ! to his name to placate his many fans amongst the “enlightened elite’”.)

clear ether

eon

eon on October 17, 2013 at 3:03 PM

Sure, it did, but continue to kowtow to the miniscule amount of Americans that oppose the pipeline.

Everyone else is an ‘extremist’ and ‘suicide bomber,’ ya know?

Resist We Much on October 17, 2013 at 1:35 PM

If just one person is…………

Dr. Frank Enstine on October 17, 2013 at 3:05 PM

The Keystone Pipeline package has been sitting on whose desk for multiple months untouched?

And I still don’t know why the state dept. is involved with this.

sadatoni on October 17, 2013 at 3:38 PM

State Dept: Oh man, this shutdown really impaired our Keystone pipeline review process, you know

…I got a pipeline for them!

KOOLAID2 on October 17, 2013 at 10:56 PM

The State Department is involved because the Saudis, who run the country, don’t want this pipeline built. So the State Department is there to carry out the Saud’s orders.

shaken on October 18, 2013 at 9:00 AM