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Building trades supported Keystone XL pipeline bill defeated


DECEMBER 2014, LEHIGH VALLEY Edition of The Union News

Building trades supported Keystone XL pipeline bill defeated


REGION, November 19th- The United States Senate recently narrowly defeated legislation that would have approved the building trades supported Keystone XL pipeline. The legislation needed 60 votes for approval and it received only 59. Most Democrats voted against the bill while all 45 Republicans voted in favor.

President Obama has not supported the XL Keystone pipeline construction, which the administration has reviewed for six years.

In the spring President Obama extended the decision of whether to construct the pipeline project, that would carry oil from Canada throughout the heart of the nation’s midwest to refineries in Texas.

The Building and Construction Trades unions support the construction because most of the work will be done with their members. The pipeline will be mostly built with federal money which would put the project under the Davis-Bacon law, meaning union wages would be paid to the construction workers.

While construction unions and pro-oil business leaders support the development of the pipeline, most environmental groups and reachers in the region oppose it.

The proposed pipeline would be 1,179 miles long, 329 miles in Canada, and 850 miles in the United States. The pipeline would cross the United States border in Montana and travel through the midwest to Texas. It will be 36 inches in diameter with a total daily oil capacity of 830,000 barrels of oil. The lower portion of the pipeline has already been built and transports oil from Oklahoma to Texas.

Republicans plan to bring the pipeline construction up for a another vote in January after they take control of the Senate. The party won enough seats in the November election to gain control.