Agency Says Keystone XL Corridor Avoids Sandhills

By: The Associated Press, WOWT contributed to this report Email
By: The Associated Press, WOWT contributed to this report Email

Nebraska environmental regulators say a new proposed corridor for the Keystone XL pipeline still crosses areas of fragile, sandy soil, even though it avoids what they defined as the Sandhills.

A report released Tuesday says the 2,000-foot-wide corridor runs through land that could erode, and passes near unconfined aquifers that supply drinking water to residents and livestock.

Officials say most of the aquifers lie near the town of Stuart.

Regulators say pipeline developer TransCanada should carefully consider a route that avoids the aquifers, and document what safety precautions the company takes if doing so is not possible.

TransCanada is currently going over the report and Shawn Howard who is with the External Communications team issued this statement to WOWT: "TransCanada has been building pipelines and energy infrastructure for more than 60 years. We have constructed projects through all kinds of sensitive areas with great success. The Nebraska Department of Environmental Quality has identified some of Nebraska's sensitive areas and we will address the questions they have raised when selecting the Keystone XL route around the Sandhills."

The pipeline is expected to carry Canadian crude oil through Nebraska on its way to Texas refineries.

The report is part of an effort to find a route that avoids environmentally sensitive areas.

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