OTTAWA, Sept. 22 (UPI) -- Washington should look to Alberta oil sands because it's running out of good alternatives, the Canadian prime minister said, touting the Keystone XL pipeline.
Canadian pipeline company TransCanada is proposing a pipeline to carry oil from tar sands projects in Alberta, Canada, to refiners along the southern coast of the United States.
Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper told Bloomberg News that Washington's approval of Keystone XL was a "no-brainer" because of its benefits to U.S. energy security.
"The need for energy in the U.S. is enormous, the alternatives for the U.S. are not good, on every level," he added.
Washington is expected to make its final decision on the project this year. The U.S. State Department, which needs to approve the project because it crosses national borders, said in August that it didn't expect any significant environmental impact along its intended route.
Critics say tar sands oil development is dangerous to the environment and more corrosive than conventional crude oil. The planned route for Keystone XL runs through migratory bird pathways, water aquifers and farms in the U.S. heartland.
TransCanada spokesman Terry Cunha told Bloomberg his company agreed with Harper's sentiments regarding U.S. energy security.