President Barack Obama’s promise to expedite review of the southern leg of TransCanada Corp. (TRP)’s Keystone XL pipeline won’t speed up the timeline for the project, which already is slated to start construction as soon as June.
TransCanada is awaiting permits from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the last it needs to begin construction on the phase of the pipeline that will carry crude from the oil storage hub at Cushing, Oklahoma, to Gulf Coast refineries, Terry Cunha, a spokesman for the Calgary-based company, said in an e-mail message yesterday.
“We expect to receive the permits in time to begin construction in 2012 and be operational in 2013,” he said.
Obama yesterday began a four-state tour to promote his energy policies as Republicans blame him for surging gasoline prices. After stops in Nevada and New Mexico yesterday, Obama plans an appearance at Cushing today to announce that the administration is designating the southern Keystone section an infrastructure priority, according to a statement from the White House. That will make the project eligible for accelerated review of permit applications, according to the statement.
TransCanada’s president of energy and oil pipelines, Alex Pourbaix, said in an interview March 6 that construction on the Cushing phase of Keystone could begin as soon as June. The company doesn’t expect the new review process to change that schedule, Cunha said yesterday.
So, so typical of this White House and it’s running-on-empty energy policy.