Schweitzer Maintains Support for Keystone XL Pipeline

By Beacon Staff

Despite the recent oil spill resulting from ExxonMobil’s burst pipeline under the Yellowstone River in central Montana, Gov. Brian Schweitzer said he still supports TransCanada’s proposed Keystone XL pipeline, which would run under the same river. <a href="http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0711/58392_Page2.html" title="From POLITICO:”>From POLITICO:

“Modern pipeline technology does not lay pipeline in the bed of a river,” he said, adding the Keystone project is needed.

“Montana is an energy state,” he said. “And we can’t use it all here.”

TransCanada spokesman <a href="http://ca.reuters.com/article/domesticNews/idCATRE7645QP20110705?sp=true" title="Terry Cunha tells Reuters“>Terry Cunha tells Reuters that the pipeline would be buried deeper and would use thicker steel than the one that leaked.

“The pipeline would be a minimum of 25 feet below the riverbed,” Cunha said. “Additionally, entry and exit points for the crossing would be extended away from the banks for the river. Thus, any risk of scour or erosion exposing the pipe is mitigated.”

Environmental groups, such as the National Resources Defense Council, say the spill should “be a wakeup call for the Obama administration as it considers a proposal to build Keystone XL.”