Hoyer on Keystone: ‘I’m in Favor of Building It’

March 11, 2014 - 4:30 PM

hoyer

House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-Md.). (AP Photo)

(CNSNews.com) -- Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) said he supports building the Keystone XL Pipeline and that he agrees with the State Department’s report that not building the pipeline would increase greenhouse gas emissions.

At a pen-and-pad briefing at the U.S. Capitol on Tuesday, CNSNews.com asked Hoyer, “In the State Department’s report, it said that if the Keystone Pipeline is not built, the method of delivering oil would increase greenhouse gases from 28 to 42 percent, are you in favor of not building ….”

Hoyer said,  “If it was not built? Sorry, I don’t understand the question.”

CNSNews.com rephrased the question saying, “The State Department’s report, it said that not building the Keystone pipeline, the method of [delivering the] oil would increase greenhouse gases. Are you in favor of not building the pipeline, even if it means greenhouse gases will increase?”

Keystone pipeline

(Map from TransCanada Web site)

Hoyer then said, “In favor of not building it? I’m in favor of building it. I said about a year ago, I think in this group, that I was for Keystone.”

“I think the State Department is correct,” he said.  “The president has made the observation on  numerous occasions and I’ve heard him personally, been with him when he said that obviously we want to be on a path away from fossil fuels, but natural gases are preferable to oil, clean air. Obviously, the extraction process itself is concerning to many people, as it well should be. We need to make sure that it’s safe, no harm to the water.”

Hoyer continued, “But I agree with the president. I agree with the observation you just quoted from the State Department that this would be net positive, not a negative, so I support it.”

Hoyer had previously stated in 2011 that Republican efforts to force a vote on the Keystone XL pipeline project was a “stick in the eye” of Democrats who oppose it.

Keystone is a proposed 1,179-mile 36-inch diameter pipeline that will transport crude oil from Hardisty, Alberta, Canada to Steele City, Neb., according to the website of TransCanada, the company in charge of the project.

“Along with transporting crude oil from Canada, the Keystone XL Pipeline will also support the significant growth of crude oil production in the United States from producers in the Bakken region of Montana and North Dakota,” the explanation on the company’s website stated.

Keystone is a proposed 1,179-mile 36-inch diameter pipeline that will transport crude oil from Hardisty, Alberta, Canada to Steele City, Neb., according to the website of TransCanada, the company in charge of the project.

“Along with transporting crude oil from Canada, the Keystone XL Pipeline will also support the significant growth of crude oil production in the United States from producers in the Bakken region of Montana and North Dakota,” the explanation on the company’s website stated.

Despite comments that he supports the energy and jobs that Keystone XL would provide, President Obama has also repeatedly expressed concern about carbon emissions from fossil fuels and has refused to approve the pipeline.