Fast-Track XL Oil Pipeline – What it Means for the USA


Will the Keystone XL project have the benefits Obama proposes for the US? What can we expect from this project?

Obama’s directive in moving the project forward will is changing the country’s route in oil transportation through the United States for the first time.

The XL pipeline is said to become the most advanced pipeline in North America to transport oil from U.S. Producers in North Dakota, Montana, Oklahoma and Texas.

From Cushing Oklahoma, to the refineries on the Gulf coast, a new 485 mile transport line through the country’s agricultural heartland could spell disaster for drinking water for many if there was one large spill. Keystone XL will cross through the Niobrara and Missouri Rivers, the Ogallala aquifer, fisheries and wildlife habitats.

On the flipside, TransCanada, who touts themselves as being the leading energy infrastructure company in North America, has supplied information to the public to dispel fears as they work in tandem with the XL oil pipline project proposals to make it a success.

The project is slated to be in service by 2015. “It is completely supported…,” Transcanada states on their fact sheet at their website. “We have successfully reached easement agreements with more than 80% of landowners on the route in Texas (as of Februrary 2011). In addition, we have currently negotiated agreements with almost 93% of landowners on the landowners who own/control almost 90% of the tracts of land along the entire pipeline.”

TransCanada states, “Each year, hundreds of millions of gallons of crude oil and petroleum products are safely transported on thousands of miles of pipelines in the U.S. The vast majority of pipeline leaks are small, with most involving less than three barrels…” The report also states that 80% of spills involve less than 50 barrels.

The same report states that the Federal Railroad Administration and the Pipeline Hazardous Materials Safety Administration in the United States have report that for every pipeline incident that takes place, there are 50 railway incidents.

There is no question that many are for and against this new pipeline. The changes this pipeline will make will effect the way business has been done and the way crude has been transported for many years. The effects of it all are yet to be seen.

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