Kerry wants Keystone decision 'sooner rather than later'

Kerry wants Keystone decision 'sooner rather than later'

Secretary of State John KerryJohn KerryUS can lead on climate action by supporting developing countries Queen Elizabeth resting 'for a few days' after hospital stay Twenty-four countries say global net-zero goal will fuel inequality MORE said he wants to make a decision on the Keystone XL pipeline "sooner rather than later."

Kerry's comments were delivered after a meeting with Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper on Tuesday.

Kerry said "of course" the pipeline, which would carry crude oil from Alberta to Gulf refineries, came up during their talk.

"I certainly want to do it sooner rather than later, but I can’t tell you a precise date," Kerry said, referencing the recommendation he must ultimately send to the president on the pipeline.

Harper said he was encouraged by the positive environmental studies from the State Department.

"We look forward to resolving this challenge. It is obviously an important one for Canada," Harper added.

The State Department is waiting for litigation to wrap up in Nebraska over the route of the project. The court intervention delayed a decision on the project until after the November midterms.

The Keystone pipeline has put the Obama administration in a difficult spot, with the oil lobby and labor groups pushing for approval and green groups opposed.

After the Nebraska case wraps up, State will need to finish a report determining if the pipeline is in the national interest. Kerry will then send his recommendation on whether the pipeline should be approved to the president.