Controversial Pipeline Springs a Leak

The Story:

An underground pipeline in South Dakota, part of the Keystone System, has leaked roughly 5,000 barrels of oil. The company, TransCanada, discovered the leak early Thursday morning, November 16.

The Background:

This Keystone System conveys crude oil from the oil sands of western Canada to refineries in the United States, in both Texas and Illinois. There is a proposed extension pending, the “Keystone XL” pipeline, which involves giving this export both a shorter route and a larger diameter pipe.

In the Presidential campaign of 2016, both Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders on the Democratic side opposed Keystone XL. The Republican candidates generally supported it, Donald Trump enthusiastically so.

The Thing to Know:

The timing of this leak is very unfortunate for TransCanada, since on Monday, November 20, Nebraska’s Public Service Commission is scheduled to decide whether to grant the permits for XL work in that state.

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