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Begich Joins Bipartisan Push for President to Approve Keystone Pipeline


Continues Push for Energy Independence, Job Creation

U.S. Senator Mark Begich today joined a bipartisan group of Senators in calling on President Obama to act quickly in approving the Keystone XL pipeline after the state of Nebraska’s approval yesterday.

Begich, a strong supporter of broad oil and gas development in Alaska and elsewhere in the U.S., signed a letter with 52 other senators from both parties written to President Obama encouraging him to accelerate the Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS) and quickly complete the National Interest Determination, the two steps needed to begin the project.

“The reasons to approve this project are straightforward and simple: the Keystone XL Pipeline will provide America with a secure supply of energy from a trusted ally, create jobs, and provide a much needed boost our economy. The President has committed to an all of the above approach which includes oil and gas. Now that Nebraska has approved the route, I strongly encourage President Obama to follow through on that promise.”

The Senators write in the letter:

“On March 22, 2012, you directed federal agencies to accelerate approval of vital energy infrastructure projects like the Keystone XL Pipeline. We strongly urge you to direct the State Department to accelerate the Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS) and quickly complete the National Interest Determination. …This should be able to be done quickly. Approval of the [Alberta Clipper] permit sends a positive economic signal, in a difficult economic period, about the future reliability and availability of a portion of United States’ energy imports, and in the immediate term, this shovel-ready project will provide construction jobs for workers in the United States.”

Among the cosigners are Sens. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), Mark Pryor (D-Ark.), John Cornyn (R-Texas), Mary Landrieu (D-La.), David Vitter (R-La.), Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) and Heidi Heitkamp (D-N.D.). This past November, Begich cosigned a similar bipartisan letter calling on the President to approve the Keystone XL project and asking to meet with him to further discuss the project. 

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