Approve the Keystone XL pipeline in the next month, Sen. Kay Hagan, D-N.C., and 19 other senators are saying in a letter to the new secretary of state, their former Senate colleague John Kerry.
(Full text of the Feb. 22 letter and Hagan's news release today is here. For the names of those who signed, click on the text link.)
The pipeline would carry oil from the tarsands of Alberta, Canada, to ports on the Gulf of Mexico in Texas (latest McClatchy story on it here). Environmentalists oppose the pipeline because of the heat-trapping emissions from producing and using the oil, and because of threats of spills along the line.
The bipartisan group of senators told Kerry to approve the pipeline quickly. “Further delay will continue to hurt job creation and may damage our relationship with Canada,” they write.
It’s not the first time Hagan has written in favor of Keystone XL. She signed on to another bipartisan letter making that case to President Barack Obama in November.
The State Department’s approval is required because the pipeline crosses the international border. The latest letter said the administration should make a decision in the first quarter of this year.