Oil sands at Fort McMurray. Alberta is home to 68 percent of Canada’s natural gas production, 47 percent of its light crude oil production as well as 80 percent of all crude oil and equivalents. Photo: Mark Ralston / AFP / Getty Images

By Nicholas Kusnetz
20 October 2017

(Inside Climate News) – You've probably heard of the Keystone XL pipeline. But what about Line 67, also known as the Alberta Clipper?

Nine years ago, both were controversial proposals to ship oil from Canada's tar sands into the United States. But while Keystone XL is still awaiting approval and continues to draw protests, Line 67 quietly secured a federal permit last week to ship even more crude than Keystone would.

On 13 October 2017, the State Department approved a long-awaited permit that allows Enbridge, which owns the pipeline, to pump up to 890,000 barrels per day across the border between Canada and North Dakota, en route to Superior, Wisconsin.

"Enbridge has built the equivalent of a Keystone XL pipeline without gaining the kind of attention that Keystone got," said Kenneth Rumelt, a senior attorney and professor at Vermont Law School who represented several environmental and indigenous groups in a challenge to the project. "Other than our suit, it largely slipped under the radar. But really, this is a quiet Keystone XL pipeline."

Even before the approval, though, the company had already effectively been shipping the full volume through a clever work-around.

It's a convoluted story that reflects how Enbridge has gone about trying to boost its capacity to ship Canadian tar sands crude to U.S. refineries piece by piece. [more]

Tar Sands Pipeline that Could Rival Keystone XL Quietly Gets Trump Approval

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