SAN FRANCISCO — The federal natural resources minister says he’ll be stumping for the controversial Keystone XL oil pipeline during his visit to California this week.
Joe Oliver says he’ll make the case that the U.S. State Department should approve the US$7-billion pipeline, which would ship oilsands crude to the Texas coast.
He told reporters on a conference call from San Francisco that he was encouraged by a recent State Department report that says Keystone XL is not likely to cause major environmental damage.
Last week nine Nobel Peace Prize winners — including the Dalai Lama and South African clergyman Desmond Tutu — wrote to U.S. President Barack Obama urging him to nix the project, which many fear will harm key water sources.
Oliver says a decision on Keystone XL should be made based on science, so a recent assessment from a Nobel laureate in physics — U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu — carries more weight.
Chu has said he takes more comfort in America getting its oil from Canada than having to rely on less friendly suppliers elsewhere in the world.