Keystone firm seeks damages
The company that proposed the Keystone XL pipeline is seeking $15 billion in damages from the federal government after the Obama administration rejected the Canada-to-Texas project, a company spokesman said Monday.
TransCanada Inc. filed a request for arbitration Friday under the North American Free Trade Agreement, arguing that the State Department’s actions led the company to believe the project would win approval. President Obama rejected a federal permit for the project in November, saying it would have undercut the nation’s reputation as a global leader on addressing climate change.
The Calgary-based company argues that it moved forward with the project under the assumption that it would win approval, given numerous federal reviews and the government’s approval of the original Keystone pipeline. It also alleges that the administration rejected the project to bolster its environmental credentials.
“TransCanada has been unjustly deprived of the value of its multibillion-dollar investment by the U.S. Administration’s arbitrary and unjustified denial,” company spokesman Mark Cooper said. “It is our responsibility to take the actions we deem appropriate to protect our rights.”
The pipeline would have carried 830,000 barrels of crude oil per day from Hardisty, Alberta, in Canada to Steele City, Neb., where it would have connected to existing pipelines running south to Gulf Coast refineries. The final route would have run through Montana, South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas.
A State Department spokesman said the agency doesn’t comment on pending litigation.