Green groups launch new federal lawsuit to block Keystone XL pipeline

Environmental groups filed a federal lawsuit in the U.S. district court for the District of Montana against U.S. President Donald Trump’s ongoing attempts to approve the Keystone XL pipeline.

The National Resource Defense Council (NRDC) along with the Northern Plains Resource Council, Bold Alliance, Center for Biological Diversity, Friends of the Earth, and Sierra Club were among the groups filing the lawsuit in a U.S. district court in Montana.

If built, the 830,000 barrels per day project would carry crude oil across Montana, South Dakota and Nebraska to the Gulf Coast, thus “the pipeline would threaten countless communities and habitats and exacerbate our climate crisis,” the environmental groups’ press release reads.

The crux of their suit alleges that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers unlawfully issued a Nationwide Permit 12 in March 2019. It is a permit that the Corps can generally grant in order to approve projects like pipelines, but NRDC asserts that they did not properly assess the environmental impacts.

The NRDC adds that they have sent notices to President Trump, the Army Corps and the companies involved in building the Keystone XL of their potential liability under the Endangered Species Act, highlighting the whooping crane as an animal under particular threat.

“Yet the fact remains that no federal agency has completed a full and adequate analysis of Keystone XL’s environmental impacts.”

TC Energy, formerly Trans Canada, has recently announced that a 2019 construction of the pipeline would not be possible as it had missed the window to start construction this season.

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