Senator: Keystone XL bad for oil prices

Oct. 18, 2011 at 6:57 AM
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WASHINGTON, Oct. 18 (UPI) -- Building the Keystone XL pipeline to carry tar sands oil from Canada won't mean lower energy prices for U.S. consumers, a U.S. senator claims.

Canadian pipeline company TransCanada wants to build its Keystone XL pipeline to carry oil from tar sands projects in Alberta to refineries along the southern U.S. coast. The company, as well as officials in the White House, argues the project is good for energy security.

U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., in an opinion article in the Huffington Post, said more crude oil on the markets usually means lower prices but that's not the case with Keystone XL.

He says the pipeline would make it easier for Canadian producers to export their crude, meaning they can charge as much as they want for their oil.

"That's a good deal for oil producers, not such a good deal for American families and businesses that need to pay for oil," he argues.

Bill Day, a spokesman for international oil trader Valero, told the Billings (Mont.) Gazette that Keystone XL is "not set up to be an export pipeline."

Critics of the project said the planned route runs through key migratory bird pathways and aquifers. Crude oil from Alberta tar sands, meanwhile, is more corrosive than conventional oil.

Wyden sits on the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources. Keystone XL wouldn't pass through his state.

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