The US Department of Interior (DOI) has approved signed a Record of Decision for the North American energy infrastructure company TC Energy’s long-delayed and controversial pipeline project, Keystone XL.

Estimated to cost $8bn, the Keystone XL pipeline project aims to supply crude from the Alberta oil sands in Canada to the US Gulf Coast refineries.

The 1,209km crude oil pipeline will have the capacity to deliver 830,000 barrels of heavy crude oil a day.

The latest move allows the US Bureau of Land Management (BLM) to offer a right-of-way grant for a 30-year term to TC Energy. The firm will now commence the construction on over 70km of the pipeline’s route on federally managed lands in Montana.

US Secretary of the Interior David Bernhardt said: “Today’s decision is an important milestone in constructing the Keystone XL pipeline and a great day for the common sense infrastructure improvement in our country.

“President Trump clearly recognizes the importance of having the infrastructure necessary to meet our energy needs and to fuel our economic progress.”

BLM’s decision on Keystone XL pipeline follows completion of comprehensive environmental review

The BLM’s decision follows the completion of comprehensive environmental review, tribal consultation and public input carried out over several years in a bid to reduce the project’s impacts.

US Department of the Interior, Land & Minerals Management acting assistant secretary Casey Hammond said: “Along with sustainable and responsible development of our energy resources, this pipeline will provide jobs and opportunity and ensure reliable and affordable energy supplies are safely transported to power our nation’s economy.”

Montana Congressman Greg Gianforte said: “The Keystone XL pipeline will create good-paying Montana jobs, boost our local economies, increase American energy security, and help keep energy prices down.”

In August 2019, the Nebraska Supreme Court affirmed an approval made by Nebraska Public Service Commission (Nebraska Public Service PSC) pertaining to the alternate route of TC Energy’s Keystone XL Pipeline project through Nebraska, US.