On President Joe Biden’s first day in office, the newly-minted president “disappointed” Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau as Biden signed an executive order to revoke the permit for the Keystone XL pipeline.
The Keystone pipeline has been a major political issue on both sides of the border for the last decade. Currently, a pipeline extends from Alberta all the way to the Gulf Coast, with several refineries along the way.
TC Energy has attempted to build a larger, more direct pipeline from Hardisty, Alberta, to Steele City, Nebraska. TC Energy says the Keystone XL pipeline would be capable of delivering 830,000 barrels of crude oil per day from Hardisty to Steele City. President Barack Obama held up the permit’s approval in 2015, but President Donald Trump allowed the project to move forward after his inauguration.
TC Energy says that the pipeline would create 13,200 jobs, with 10,400 being in the US and 2,800 being in Canada.
While Trudeau welcomed that the US would rejoin the Paris Agreement, revoking the permit will cost Canadian jobs, Trudeau said.
“Workers in Alberta, Saskatchewan, and across Canada will always have our support. Canada is the single-largest supplier of energy to the United States, contributing to U.S. energy security and economic competitiveness, and supporting thousands of jobs on both sides of the border,” Trudeau said.
Trudeau said he previously spoke to Biden about the pipeline.
“I spoke directly with President Biden about the project last November, and Ambassador Hillman and others in our government made the case to high-level officials in the incoming administration,” he said.
Like in the US, the issue of the Keystone XL pipeline is hotly-debated in Canada. Environmental activists have largely opposed the pipeline’s construction. The pipeline’s construction has drawn opposition from many Native American and First Nations leaders.
Despite Trudeau’s disappointment, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said that Biden’s first phone call with a head of state as president will be with Trudeau on Friday.