Energy & Environment

Challenge to Biden Keystone XL revocation dismissed as moot

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A federal judge in Texas dismissed a challenge to Biden’s decision to revoke a key permit for the Keystone XL pipeline — saying that the case is moot since the project has already been canceled. 

Judge Jeffrey Brown cited a brief from pipeline owner TC Energy confirming that it was starting to remove the pipeline’s border-crossing segment and was expected to have done so by November.

“The court takes TC Energy at its word that Keystone XL is dead. And because it is dead, any ruling this court makes on whether President Biden had the authority to revoke the permit would be advisory,” the Trump appointee wrote.

“Thus, the court has no jurisdiction and the case must be dismissed as moot,” he added.

On his first day in office, President Biden revoked a border crossing permit for the Keystone XL pipeline. 

The move spurred cheers from environmentalists who had long despised the project, which was slated to bring carbon-intensive tar sands oil from Canada to the U.S.

But Biden’s move was criticized by numerous Republicans, who argued that it was an attack on fossil fuels.

More than 20 states with Republican attorneys-general sued over the decision, but their suit was ultimately rejected on Thursday. 

In a statement, Montana Attorney General Austin Knudsen expressed disappointment.

“It’s unfortunate that the important constitutional question in this case – if the president can revoke a congressionally approved cross-border permit – will go unanswered because TC Energy inserted itself into the court proceedings unprompted.”

“This also deprived Montanans and residents of other states who would have benefited from the pipeline’s jobs and tax revenue of their day in court,” Knudsen said. 

In June, months after Biden’s initial move, TC Energy announced that it would officially cancel the project. 

Tags Climate change Joe Biden Keystone XL pipeline

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