Will he or won’t he? …

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… Canadian efforts to sway Obama’s key decision.

Senate has already backed construction of the Keystone XL pipeline—but the final decision must come from President Obama (who has previously rejected it, twice).  While President Obama considers his options, Canadian politicians are actively promoting the benefits south of the border. The Keystone pipeline would connect existing pipelines and carry oil produced in Canada to US refineries. Here is a quick round-up of the efforts by Canadian politicians’ to promote Keystone to American decision-makers.

In an effort to sway the American public, the Albertan government has been promoting Alberta’s oil sand environmental record.  For example, on April 7, the Ottawa citizen reported that Alberta published advertisements stating the economic benefits of the Keystone pipeline as well as their efforts to regulate oil sands development.

The effort to sway public opinion was not only directed at Americans, the Albertan Minister of the Environment also stunned industry leaders by floating ambitious new regulations for the oil sand industry, the full story of those regulations can be found, here.  On April 10, 2013, the Federal Minister of Natural Resources also announced that amendments to NEB Onshore Pipeline regulations were in force.  These amendments help ensure that concerned companies create and maintain an environmental management system with sufficient support staff. These efforts and general compliance would also be subject to more audits under the amendments.

Yet, Obama’s decision may be circumvented by Congress and as the CBC reported, Alison Redford seems intent on appealing directly to congress in an effort to sway the decision.

Both Alberta and the Federal government officials are putting their muscle behind efforts to promote the Keystone XL project. But, with fierce opposition by various groups in the United States and a hesitant Obama, only time will tell if this pipeline is ever approved.