​Keystone XL schedule calls for border crossing construction to start in April

CALGARY — TC Energy Corp. says it plans to begin construction in April to connect the Keystone XL pipeline from the United States into Canada.

However, in an amended status report filed with the U.S. District Court of Montana Tuesday, it says construction of the 1.9-kilometre border-crossing segment is still dependent on receipt of a grant of right-of-way and temporary use permit from the U.S. Bureau of Land Management and necessary federal land authorizations.

The Calgary-based company has been reluctant to give specific construction timelines for the oil export pipeline that was effectively mothballed by the Obama administration in 2014 and has a become a flashpoint for the climate change clash between environmentalists and the energy industry.

President Donald Trump twice signed approvals aimed at clearing the way for the project to proceed, once in 2017 and again in 2019, but it has been held up by various state court challenges and injunctions ever since.

In its filing, TC Energy says construction is planned to commence on certain pipeline segments in Montana and South Dakota in August and it will continue in 2021.

Mobilization of equipment is expected to commence 30 to 60 days in advance of construction in each of these areas.

“In February, TC Energy intends to begin mobilizing heavy construction equipment to sites designated for worker camps and pipeline storage yards in Montana, South Dakota, and Nebraska,” the company says in the filing.

“TC Energy further plans to commence tree-felling activity with landowners' consent in certain areas in South Dakota.”

© 2020 The Canadian Press

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