Judge nixes Keystone's Nebraska path

A Nebraska county judge struck down a law that would allow the controversial Keystone XL pipeline to run through the state.

Lancaster County Judge Stephanie Stacy's ruling Wednesday invalidated Gov. Dave Heineman's approval of the pipeline's route.


Stacy ruled that under the Major Oil Pipeline Siting Act, all routes must be evaluated and approved by the state's Public Service Commission, which regulates pipelines and other utilities.

The ruling may cause further delay in the process leading to a decision on the TransCanada pipeline, which would carry crude from Alberta to Gulf of Mexico refineries.

Tension over President Obama's final decision on Keystone XL has increased since the State Department released its final environmental review of the project.

It's a win for pipeline opponents such as the coalition Bold Nebraska, which argued Heineman overstepped his authority when approving the route for the $5.4 billion project early last year.