WASHINGTON, March 14 (UPI) -- The Keystone XL oil pipeline can't be in the U.S. national interest because U.S. refiners processing Canadian crude will export the oil, an opponent said.
Oil Change International, a group opposed to the Keystone XL oil pipeline, said government data suggest more than half of the refineries that would receive Canadian crude oil from the pipeline export most of their products.
Supporters of Keystone XL say the project would help ensure North American energy independence by utilizing more regional oil reserves. Oil Change International, however, challenges that logic, citing export data from southern U.S. refiners.
"It is now clear that the Keystone XL pipeline is a pipeline through America not to America," the group stated.
A U.S. State Department review of the pipeline dampened environmental criticism of the pipeline but said domestic oil market dynamics and transit infrastructure like rail should be considered when assessing the need for Keystone XL.
Statements from Oil Change come as Republicans pressure U.S. President Barack Obama to sign off on the project. Presidential consent is needed because the pipeline would cross the U.S.-Canadian border.
The Hill, a Washington newspaper, reports that Obama told House Republicans that a decision was expected soon. The Hill reports Republicans were divided, however, on where the president stands on the project.