State Dept. Grants More Time to Consider Keystone XL Pipeline

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The State Department announced Tuesday evening that it plans to issue a supplemental draft environmental impact statement on the proposed 1,661-mile pipeline that would carry oil from Alberta’s tar sands to refineries in Texas.

The State Department said it would issue a supplemental evaluation of the potential impact of TransCanada’s Keystone XL pipeline. The proposed pipeline would cross the Ogallala Aquifer, which provides the ground water used to irrigate a third of the country’s crops, as well as 70 rivers and streams. Last July, the Environmental Protection Agency flagged the pipeline for more review, citing concerns about air pollution, public safety, and potential spills.

From the release:

The public will have 45 days to comment on the Supplemental Draft EIS after the anticipated mid-April comment period begins. Following issuance of a Final EIS, the State Department will solicit public comment and host a public meeting in Washington, D.C., before it makes a determination under Executive Order 13337 on whether issuance of this permit is in the U.S. national interest.

The U.S. Department of State expects to make a decision on whether to grant or deny the permit before the end of 2011.

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You expect the big picture, and it's our job at Mother Jones to give it to you. And right now, so many of the troubles we face are the making not of a virus, but of the quest for profit, political or economic (and not just from the man in the White House who could have offered leadership and comfort but instead gave us bleach).

In "News Is Just Like Waste Management," we unpack what the coronavirus crisis has meant for journalism, including Mother Jones’, and how we can rise to the challenge. If you're able to, this is a critical moment to support our nonprofit journalism with a donation: We've scoured our budget and made the cuts we can without impairing our mission, and we hope to raise $400,000 from our community of online readers to help keep our big reporting projects going because this extraordinary pandemic-plus-election year is no time to pull back.

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