Keystone pipeline cost surges

The cost of building the Keystone XL pipeline has increased by nearly half in the six years since its developer applied for a permit.

TransCanada Corp. said Tuesday that the oil pipeline’s final segment would cost $8 billion to build, compared with the $5.4 billion estimated when the company applied for a State Department permit in 2008.

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TransCanada told investors that the cost increase is due to the continued delays from the Obama administration in granting the permit, Reuters reports.

Republicans have pledged to pass legislation to approve the controversial pipeline if they win a Senate majority in Tuesday’s election.

Russ Girling, the company’s chief executive officer, said he was not sure what effect the elections would have on Keystone.

“Suffice to say that we are supportive of any process that can help advance the decision on the project given that the environmental review is completed and at this point in time we are just sitting and waiting for someone to say go,” he said, according to Reuters.

TransCanada said its profit in the quarter that ended Sept. 30 fell slightly from the year before to 457 million Canadian dollars, from CA$481 million the year before.