The business community is calling loudly for the swift approval of the Keystone XL Pipeline.
The CEOs, presidents and chair-people representing a diverse group of industries, including members of the National Association of Manufacturers, the Business Roundtable and U.S. Chamber of Commerce, have sent a letter to President Barack Obama emphasizing the importance of the Keystone XL to the broader U.S. economy. They are urging the President to approve construction of the project that has now been under government review for more than five years.
The signatories of this letter recognize the benefits that Keystone XL construction will bring to the United States, energy security, job growth and more than $3 billion of direct capital investment.
The business and labor communities are asking the administration to take bold action and signal that they are committed to recovery and open for business. Cooperation between Canada, the United States and Mexico on energy issues is in the interests of all Americans, it means lower energy costs, it means lower GHGs and increased competitiveness.
TransCanada CEO Russ Girling points out the U.S. Department of State wrote in its Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement on Keystone XL, released last spring, that the project would support the creation of more than 40,000 jobs in America. This figure includes 9,000 construction jobs – work for welders, heavy equipment operators, laborers, pipefitters and many more.
“As these prominent business leaders said in their letter to President Obama a positive decision on Keystone XL would affect both the rate of economic growth and America’s competitiveness,” says Girling. “I also agree with them when they state that investor confidence is shaped heavily by perceptions of business climate – whether governments take actions that enable capital investment and job growth.”
TransCanada is also winding down construction of its Gulf Coast Pipeline Project, that will transport American and Canadian crude oil from the Cushing, Okla. hub to Texas refineries. That project employed an additional 4,000 workers in the United States.
Keystone XL will enhance U.S. energy security – pushing out foreign oil from unstable, unfriendly countries that do not have strong environmental regulations and do not support American values. More than 165 business leaders who signed the letter to President Obama agree, it’s time to build Keystone XL.