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Keystone XL pipeline clears significant hurdle

Crews worked in 2012 on construction of the Keystone XL pipeline near Winona, Texas.
Crews worked in 2012 on construction of the Keystone XL pipeline near Winona, Texas.Associated Press/File 2012

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WASHINGTON — The State Department released a report Friday that could pave the way toward President Obama’s approval of the Keystone XL pipeline.

The long-awaited environmental impact statement on the project concludes that approval or denial of the pipeline, which would carry 830,000 barrels of oil a day from Alberta to the Gulf Coast, is unlikely to prompt oil companies to change the rate of their extraction of carbon-heavy tar sands oil, a State Department official said. Either way, the tar sands oil, which produces significantly more planet-warming carbon pollution than standard methods of drilling, is coming out of the ground, the report says.

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