Obama Issues Keystone Pipeline Veto

Keystone Pipeline Veto
Keystone Pipeline Veto

The White House issued a press release this week to announce that President Obama has carried out his promise to veto the Keystone XL Pipeline Approval Act. This action allows a final decision to be put on hold until further environmental reviews are complete.

The Keystone pipeline veto is the latest round in a highly political debate that has been raging since 2008, when the TransCanada Corporation first applied for a permit to construct the pipeline. At issue is a proposed 1,179-mile section of the pipeline that would run through the heart of the Bakken Formation in order to deliver 800,000 barrels of petroleum to the refineries on the Gulf Coast.

Related: Keystone Showdown Likely for New Year | Bakken

Related: No Need For Keystone XL - Continental's CEO Harold Hamm

Since the first of the year, President Obama has hinted at his intentions to veto anything the Republican majority might try to push through. Instead he has urged lawmakers to “pass a bipartisan infrastructure plan that could create more than 30 times as many jobs per year, and make this country stronger for decades to come.” Read more here.

In the official news release, President Obama stated “The Presidential power to veto legislation is one I take seriously. But I also take seriously my responsibility to the American people. And because this act of Congress conflicts with established executive branch procedures and cuts short thorough consideration of issues that could bear on our national interest — including our security, safety, and environment — it has earned my veto.

A backlash to the Keystone pipeline veto began almost immediately and accusations towards the President have accelerated, with some decrying his ties to environmental groups. The future of the legislation is unclear, but republican lawmakers are certain to try and override the veto very soon.

Read more at whitehouse.gov

photo credit: Seal Of The President Of The United States Of America (license)

North Dakota's Future - The Legislature Wants to Know

Bakken population will increase ~30%
Bakken population will increase ~30%

Throughout 2014, the energy market experienced unprecedented production along with wildly fluctuating prices in crude, leaving many to wonder about the long-range future of the Bakken Shale region.

The North Dakota legislature recently commissioned a massive study from KLJ, Inc. to analyze the economic forecast and possible trends for 19 counties through the year 2019. This unprecedented study concentrated on areas such as population growth, employment, housing.

The oil boom means more job opportunities in companies directly involved in oil and gas production as well as in industries that indirectly support this production. The study predicts that these jobs will spur a population increase in some North Dakota counties of more than 30%, a staggering number compared to the national average of 1.5%. This increase will add a strain on the already overtaxed housing market in the area, where a great deal of permanent housing has been depleted. In even the most modest scenario, the study anticipates that housing needs will increase by close to 30,000 units for the Minot, Dickenson and Williston regions. This may play a factor in the population projection as workers will have to make hard decisions about whether to bring family along as they move to the area for work.

Permanent population will be largely driven by the supply of permanent housing in the region,” the study says. “Due to a lack of housing, the region will continue to have a total (service) population that is substantially larger than the permanent population measured by the U.S. Census.

KLJ’s study was completed before oil prices began to drop sharply. Analysts will watch closely to see if falling prices affect the accuracy of this forecast.