Joe Biden's campaign said Monday that the former vice president will rescind the Keystone XL Pipeline permit if he is elected president. The controversial pipeline proposal was initially killed during the Obama administration — only to be revived under President Trump.
"Biden strongly opposed the Keystone pipeline in the last administration, stood alongside President Obama and Secretary [John] Kerry to reject it in 2015, and will proudly stand in the Roosevelt Room again as President and stop it for good by rescinding the Keystone XL pipeline permit," Biden's campaign policy director Stef Feldman said in a press statement. "Stopping Keystone was the right decision then and it's still the right decision now."
Feldman added, "Denial of science ends on day one of a Biden presidency."
The proposed 1,200-mile, $8 billion pipeline would carry up to 830,000 barrels of oil from Alberta, Canada to Nebraska, where it would then be transferred to refineries along the Gulf of Mexico. It is owned by TC Energy, a Canadian company.
The project has been delayed for more than a decade as it faces legal challenges and opposition from environmentalists. BuzzFeed News reported in 2013 that Biden told a supporter he was "in the minority" of Obama administration officials opposed to the pipeline.
Protesters challenged construction of the pipeline for years during Obama's presidency, and Mr. Obama ultimately rejected the project in 2015, citing environmental concerns.
Mr. Obama, standing by Biden and Kerry when he announced the rejection, said the pipeline "would not serve the national interests of the United States."
Mr. Trump campaigned on a promise to revive the pipeline, and he issued a permit for its construction just weeks into his presidency.
But more than three years later, the pipeline is still stalled. A federal judge in Montana last month blocked construction, saying the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' environmental review was not sufficient. The Trump administration is appealing the judge's ruling.
Tribal leaders and residents in communities along the pipeline's route have also expressed concerns that resuming construction with thousands of workers could spread coronavirus.