Denham Statement: Floor Action on Bill to Approve Keystone XL Pipeline
Chairman Jeff Denham (R-CA)
Subcommittee on Railroads, Pipelines and Hazardous Materials
(Remarks as Prepared)
I thank the Chairman for the time to express my views on H.R. 3, which will generate numerous benefits to the nation and its economic growth. This pipeline will create jobs, enhance our energy independence, and strengthen our national security.
I am proud to say that I am a cosponsor of this legislation because it represents a significant opportunity to create jobs and spur economic growth in our country.
Furthermore, this bill will help the nation become more energy independent. According to the Department of Energy, the pipeline will transport 830,000 barrels per day of oil from Canada to the Gulf Coast, totaling nearly half of our current daily imports from the Middle East.
This bill makes these numerous project benefits a reality. What this boils down to is breaking through bureaucratic hurdles and making this project a priority. The Southern Leg of the Keystone XL Pipeline has already been approved, and this bill finishes the job allowing construction of the Northern Route of the pipeline to move forward.
This bill also ensures that the environment and its historic resources are protected, through the five years of studies that have already been completed on this project. Indeed, this is the most studied pipeline in our history.
It also ensures that the project’s routing through Nebraska, the primary objection to the permit when it was denied in January 2012, is the route chosen by the people of that State.
Simply put, as President Obama said regarding the Southern Route, this bill “cuts through the red tape.”
The project is the most extensively studied and vetted pipeline project in the history of this country. Given the nearly five years of study and review of the Keystone XL project, with 4 State Department Environmental Impact Statements, and over 15,000 pages of publicly released documents—we know the ins, outs, and all abouts of this pipeline. This bill accepts these documents and pushes forward.
I believe in an “all-of-the-above” energy strategy and this legislation is one piece of the puzzle to break America’s dependence on overseas foreign oil.
Finally, it is important to remember that this project will be built with private dollars and create thousands of private sector jobs.
This project has passed through all three Committees with bipartisan support and I urge my colleagues to support this critical legislation.
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