Trump signs order to start delayed construction of Keystone XL pipeline

Washington: US President Donald Trump on Friday (local time) signed a presidential order to initiate construction of the controversial Keystone XL oil pipeline with a facility in Montana.

The 1,179-mile Keystone XL pipelines will provide pipeline facilities between the US and Canada.

Trump’s recent order supersedes a March 2017 order. That order was nullified by a Montana federal judge. The White House then challenged the federal court in 9th Circut in December. However, that appeal has stopped further construction.

Trump’ 2017 order evoked protest by locals and eminent personalities including Hollywood stars.

“For the avoidance of doubt, I hereby revoke that March 23, 2017, permit,” Trump wrote in Friday’s order.

“Specifically, this permit reinforces, as should have been clear all along, that the Presidential Permit is indeed an exercise of Presidential authority – that is not subject to judicial review under the Administrative Procedure Act,” the White House spokesperson said.

The pipeline construction was initially blocked by former President Barack Obama’s administrations following agitation by various environmental groups who argued that the pipeline supports the extraction of crude oil from oil sands, which pumps about 17 per cent more greenhouse gases that standard crude oil extraction.