Pipeline decision warmly received

Tipton, Gardner, industry welcome president's action to back projects

President Donald J. Trump’s reversal of previous policy on the Keystone and Dakota Access pipelines augurs well for the Piceance Basin, the head of an industry association said.

Trump’s action on Tuesday reversed an executive order by President Barack Obama and split Colorado congressional representatives.

Trump’s executive action also seemed to “telegraph good news” for the Jordan Cove project, which was rejected late last year by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, said David Ludlam, executive director of the West Slope Colorado Oil and Gas Association.

Veresen Inc. is to resubmit the project to the commission, which is expected to be dominated by Republicans once Trump replaces two vacancies and replaces an outgoing commissioner on the five-member board.

The project is expected to provide Piceance Basin natural gas producers with a market on the Pacific Rim via a pipeline to Coos Bay, Oregon, where it would be shipped.

U.S. Rep. Scott Tipton and U.S. Sen. Cory Gardner, both Colorado Republicans, said they welcomed Trump’s actions, while Laurie Cipriano, a spokeswoman for U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet, D-Colo., said it was “political theater that will continue to divide Americans when the president should be working to bring our country together.”

Bennet was “frustrated with the debate on Keystone because the construction of the pipeline created few long-term jobs and the science didn’t back up claims it would have a significant effect on our climate,” Cipriano said.

Tipton, meanwhile, said he had hoped that Congress could address the Keystone and Dakota Access pipelines, but found it was “blocked at every turn by the previous administration.”

Completing the projects will increase employment, lower energy costs, and strengthen the nation’s energy security, Tipton said.

Gardner welcomed the action, saying the “responsible transportation of our domestic energy supply and energy across the nation is an important component of an all-of-the-above energy approach that will lead to the creation of jobs, keep energy affordable, and bolster our country’s energy security.”


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