President Joe Biden’s administration got down to work immediately on Wednesday, and one of its first orders of business was to put a halt to the Keystone XL Pipeline project to the dismay of U.S. manufacturers.
Biden revoked a cross-border permit granted by the Trump administration to carry out the project, which National Association of Manufacturers President Jay Timmons characterized as a “missed opportunity” for the U.S. manufacturing sector.
“The Keystone XL project would employ 10,000 union workers for pipeline construction, spur additional renewable energy projects, operate with net-zero emissions and improve our energy security,” Timmons said in a statement. “Rebuilding our economy will require us to invest in infrastructure of all types, including Keystone XL. Manufacturers have a strong commitment to responsible environmental stewardship, and protecting our environment does not require us to walk away from this job-creating opportunity.”
In a recent letter to Biden, several groups –including the National Association of Manufacturers – attempted to convince him that the project had evolved considerably since he was last in the Oval Office, and was designed to meet “future energy demand in the most sustainable way possible.”
Biden signed an order revoking a critical cross-border permit for the 1,200 mile-long project on Wednesday. Construction on the project had stopped earlier in the day in anticipation of the move.
President Barack Obama rejected the project in 2015, but President Donald Trump gave it the green light shortly into his tenure in the Oval Office.
The Keystone XL Pipeline is technically an extension of a system that already transports Canadian tar sands crude to the U.S.
The project was initially proposed in 2008 and has volleyed back and forth as the fossil fuel and industry and climate activists battle over energy policies.
Biden has pledged to pursue a green energy agenda, and his decision to revoke the Keystone XL permit is perceived as an early follow-through on those commitments.