President Biden revokes permit for the Keystone oil pipeline, slashing projected 11,000 US jobs

President Biden formally revoked the permit needed to build the Keystone XL oil pipeline, despite hopes of salvaging the $8 billion project.

In the first hours of his presidency, President Biden signed a series of executive orders. One of these executive orders revoked the permits required to continue construction of the Keystone XL pipeline that was intended to pipe oil between the U.S. and Canada. The Keystone XL pipeline has had a long history of starting controversies between economists and environmentalists. The move represents another set-back for the beleaguered Canadian oil industry, in particular its energy heartland Alberta, kills thousands of jobs, and marks an early bump in Biden’s relationship with Canada, a key trading partner (Yahoo News).

Biden’s nixing of the permits required to continue the construction of the pipeline has multiple implications, the most immediate of the two being the loss of jobs associated with the construction of the pipeline, followed by the environmental implications of the completion or halting of this construction. Once fact checked, it was revealed that the loss of jobs, albeit temporary jobs, would number 11,000 and result in roughly $1.6 billion in lost wages (PolitiFact).

Loss of wages is not the only implication of the halting of pipeline construction. There is still a conversation to be had with Canada, who is partnered with the U.S. in the process of building the Keystone XL pipeline. The environmental implications for both countries are complicated. The Biden Administration claims that such a pipeline is out-of-line with their current economic policies and incoming policy upon the United States’ return to the PCA (Paris Climate Accords). However, Canada holds a similar stance on the issue to the U.S. Republican Party. As seen in a statement from Alberta’s Premier, Jason Kenney: “Either the United States has access to environmentally responsible energy produced in a close democratic ally, or it becomes more dependent on foreign oil imports from Venezuela and other OPEC dictatorships in the future”(Reuters).




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