Keystone Pipeline project up in the air - ABC 12 – WJRT – Flint, MI

Keystone Pipeline project up in the air

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WASHINGTON, D.C. (WJRT) -

(02/07/14) - It's been a controversial idea since it was introduced five years ago, but now the debate is heating up over the possible Keystone XL Pipeline project.

Opponents say building the Keystone XL Pipeline will contribute to global warming and create the potential for a spill on American land, but supporters say the project will create jobs and improve the United States' relationship with Canada.

"We need it now. There is no reason to delay," said Rep. Candice Miller (R-MI).

Republican Congresswoman Miller supports the project. She said it will help the United States with a very important goal.

"It is part of an all-of-the-above, comprehensive energy portfolio that we need in America to really become energy independent," she said.

The 1,179 mile, $7 billion proposed Keystone XL Pipeline would carry oil from tar sands in western Canada to refineries along the Texas Gulf Coast. A recent study by the State Department said building the pipeline would have no significant impact on the environment.  

Democratic Congressman Dan Kildee (D-MI) said he looks forward to reading the entire study before taking a definite stance, but said he does have some concerns about the project.

"We know a little bit in Michigan about the long-term consequences of pipeline spills. We had a terrible pipeline spill in Southwest Michigan, the cleanup for that, years later, is still ongoing," he said.

Kildee said he will need to hear from the people he represents before he officially decides if he supports the construction of the pipeline.

"The information, the science, the research is all very helpful. How it plays out in my district in terms of the effect on our economy and the views of the people I represent are all factors I will consider," he said.

Members of Congress, and other groups, have voiced their opinions on the Keystone XL Pipeline project, but one person who hasn't is President Obama. His administration said with so many factors to consider, the President is in no rush to make a final decision.

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