Thursday , July 7 2022

US judge stops construction of Keystone KSL pipeline


On Thursday, the federal judge in Montana ordered the cessation of construction at TransCanada's Keistone KSL gas pipeline.

Brian Morris, district attorney in Montana, wrote a 54-page instruction dealing with indigenous and environmental groups, arguing that the US secretary of state made several offenses when he approved a $ 8 billion project, 1,900 miles.

In August, Morris ruled that the State Department was obliged to "analyze new information relevant to the impact of its decision on the environment" to issue a gas pipeline permit last year.

Stephan Volker, who represented the Network for Environmental Protection, called it a victory order.

"When Trump's management changed course, it did not manage to solve these factual findings," said Volker. "Under various laws in the state administration, the reasons why it appears that can change the decision when it has been done contrary to the actual findings in the past must be explained."

Volker said the Keistone KSL project violated several environmental laws and stressed that the Trump administration failed to process the key flip flop from the previous decision of former Secretary of State John Kerry in 2015.

During Barack Obama's presidency, Kerry ruled that the project was not in the public interest, citing climate change problems and the claim that the project would not be the economic driver he had promised.

Volker said that a judge's decision means that the project is separated and that it can not be continued – but the order can be appealed.

Promising or problematic?

Greenpeace Climate Activist Canada Mike Hudema said the decision was a significant shift to TransCanada's Keistone KSL project and a big win for indigenous groups and environmentalists.

"This should also be a huge sign of warning to the Liberal Government of the inevitable legal obstacles it will face if it continues to hurry and limit the process of the Trans Mountain assessment," he wrote in a statement. "We can not afford a new fossil fuel infrastructure if we want to save the planet."

The Vancouver Demonstrator has a photo of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau covered with oil during a May protest against the expansion of the Trans-Gas pipeline. (Darryl Dick / Canadian Press)

He added that the halved fossil fuel emissions over the next ten years mean that work on any new gas pipeline needs to be in place in order to avoid "climate disaster".

On the contrary, Dennis McConaghi, former executive director of TransCanada Corporation in Calgary, said this verdict was bad news for Canada, but he assumed that the verdict would be looked at and reversed by a higher court.

"It would be very, very problematic, and made even more pressure on the Trudeau government to build a TransFucco pipeline," he said. "The Canadians should be hoping that this matter will be strongly disputed and reversed."

"Not over" for an indigenous activist

Dallas Goldtooth has been tracking an overt and project project for years, and the Keep It In The Ground campaign for the Network for Indirect Environment said he was shaken by the decision as "huge news".

"We continue to kill him and keep coming back from the dead," said Goldtooth, who is Mdevakanton Dakota and a Dignan man based in Minnesota.

Goldtooth, one of the prosecutors advocated by Volker, said he would appear at the site if necessary with Judge Morris's decision to stand in the field and make sure it was followed.

"It's not over for us, we will just continue," he said.

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