FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Feb. 16, 2017
Jane Kleeb, Bold Alliance, 402-705-3622, firstname.lastname@example.org
Bold Alliance Responds to TransCanada Filing of Keystone XL Permit Application with Nebraska Public Service Commission
The up-to-year-long process includes public comment and hearings; Landowners still vow to challenge foreign corporation’s eminent domain authority
Hastings, NE — TransCanada on Thursday submitted a new permit application for a route for its Keystone XL pipeline with the Nebraska Public Service Commission.
“We are happy to see TransCanada actually following the law and our state constitution for the first time in the seven-year battle over Keystone XL,” said Jane Kleeb, President of the Bold Alliance. “Keystone XL is a foreign-owned pipeline, using foreign steel headed to the foreign export market. Bold continues to stand with farmers and ranchers to protect property rights from being infringed upon by a pipeline for their private gain. Keystone XL is and always will be all risk and no reward.”
President Trump’s State Dept. abandoned established procedure and eliminated any opportunity for public comment on TransCanada’s federal permit application and the Environmental Impact Statement for Keystone XL, the same review that led Sec. Kerry and President Obama to determine the pipeline was not in the U.S. national interest. The State Dept. received more than 1 million comments from citizens the last time around.
The pipeline permit application process at the Public Service Commission can take eight months to a year. The process calls for public hearings and other opportunities for comment, including an official intervenor process where landowners and others are represented by attorneys, and testimony is heard from experts and others in a semi-judicial setting.
TransCanada also cannot apply to use eminent domain authority again to take farmers’ and ranchers’ land against their will until September 2017, according to applicable Nebraska state law governing the use of eminent domain. The collective of Nebraska landowners who held out against selling their land to TransCanada remains strong — many are still in court suing TransCanada for the money they have already spent on attorneys and court costs battling eminent domain for over six years.
Background on Nebraska opposition to Keystone XL:
TransCanada Still Pursuing $15 Billion NAFTA Arbitration Claim
After President Obama concluded that TransCanada’s Keystone XL project would not be in the U.S. national interest and rejected the project in November 2015, TransCanada in June 2016 filed a $15 billion claim for “lost revenue” and requested arbitration under the North American Free Trade Agreement’s (NAFTA) “Investor-State Dispute Settlement” (ISDS) process — a shady, closed tribunal where the company even gets to select one of the three judges assigned to decide the case.
It’s just this type of secretive, closed-door arbitration process under NAFTA that fueled momentum for a bipartisan chorus calling for the rejection of the similar Trans-Pacific Partnership, which President Trump has already said the U.S. would not join.
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