For going on five years, oil and natural gas industry officials have stressed the importance of the Keystone XL pipeline designed to carry crude oil from Alberta’s oil sands to refineries along the Gulf Coast.
Oklahoma’s pre-emiment oilman, Continental Resources CEO Harold Hamm, joined the chorus after developer TransCanada agreed to add an on-ramp to transport oil from the Bakken Shale in North Dakota and Montana.
But apparently Hamm has changed his mind on the project.
Hamm said he does not expect the Obama administration to approve Keystone XL, but there are other options for oil producers.
Enbridge Inc., another Canadian company, is expanding its oil transportation system in North Dakota with new pipelines and rail routes.
A TransCanada spokesman said Keystone XL remains a vital project.
“While rail has been increasingly utilized to connect Bakken producers to markets, the current infrastructure does not allow Bakken crude oil to get to the right market, and certainly not as competitive a price as pipelines offer,” spokesman Shawn Howard said in an e-mailed statement to National Journal Daily.