The Obama administration is unlikely to make a decision on the Canada-to-Nebraska Keystone XL pipeline until late this year as it painstakingly weighs the project's impact on the
environment and on energy security2014 mid-term elections, a U.S. official and analysts said on Friday.
The decision may not be made until November, December or even early 2014, said a U.S. official, as President Barack Obama will not rush the process, which still has a number of stages to work through. One of those stages has not even begun yet and will run for months.
"The president has to be able to show that the administration looked under every stone to ensure it knew as much as it possibly could about the impact of Keystone," said the official, who did not want to be named given the sensitive nature of the project.
Analysts agreed that a decision would not be made by this summer as the State Department had suggested when it issued an environmental review on the pipeline on March 1.I would have to say the Keystone Pipeline story -- regardless how it turns out -- will be the president's lasting legacy.
If the decision is not made before March, 2014, it will be delayed until after the mid-term elections. This is not rocket science. The president's party is likely to lose the Senate, and the opposition's majority in the House could widen. The Keystone XL will probably be the deciding factor in some races. As ridiculous as that is. It also keeps a lot of campaign money flowing.
My hunch is that the controversy over the Keystone will affect decision-making process on all new interstate pipelines. The activist environmentalists lost on the fracking issue (the technology moved faster than the activists could organize) and shutting down pipelines, shuts down drilling, and fracking by default.
Crude-by-rail is in the driver's seat.