Washington, D.C. — Subcommittee on Environment and Climate Change Republican Leader David B. McKinley hosted a forum on President Joe Biden’s decision to cancel the Keystone XL pipeline and what it means for this and other energy projects around the country.
Excerpts and highlights from his prepared remarks:
The Democrats’ War on Fossil Fuel Jobs
“On his first day in office, President Biden revived the Democrats’ War on fossil fuels, which began under President Obama, Harry Reid, and Nancy Pelosi.
“In doing so, eliminating countless jobs and billions in economic revenue, money that supports local schools and hospitals. These actions are destroying those communities reliance on fossil fuels for their livelihoods.
“Today’s forum will focus on the president’s decision to cancel the Keystone XL pipeline.”
The President’s Destructive Actions
“Through the use of executive order, President Biden revoked the permit needed for the project to cross over the U.S.–Canadian border.
“And he stated that completing the project doesn’t serve ‘the national interest,’ and it ‘would not be consistent’ with the administration’s economic and climate priorities.
“Curiously, though, in 2013, President Obama’s State Department found that development of Keystone XL would have ‘minimal impact on the environment.’
“And when President Trump took office in 2017, his administration took action to move the project forward and work resumed.
“Then, 4 years later, Biden revoked the permit issued by his predecessor. And in so doing so cost the area 11,000 jobs and $2 billion in lost wages.
“In reflecting on this denial, how do lost jobs and wages serve the national interest?
“Remember, Keystone is but one of many pipeline projects under the microscope. Others like the Dakota Access Pipeline, Mountain Valley Pipeline, and Line 5 in Michigan also face an uncertain future.”
The Financial Costs
“From a business perspective this uncertainty causes alarm. Financial institutions and investors look for certainty when funding projects.
“Why would Wall Street invest in a project that requires a permit, simply to see it withdrawn in a different administration years later?
“When a project is cancelled, it creates a loss for banks, bond holders, and other sources of funding. And unfortunately, bond holders are often pension funds.”
“Is this Biden’s effort to stop pipelines? Or is it a more sinister approach to discourage Wall Street and investors from getting involved in funding fossil fuel projects and pipelines altogether?”