Executive Order 13604 of March 22, 2012 Improving Performance of Federal Permitting and Review of Infrastructure Projects


Executive Order 13604 of March 22, 2012

Improving Performance of Federal Permitting and Review of Infrastructure Projects

Breaking down the Keystone XL executive order

Obama’s Keystone XL southern half March 2012 memo reads like Big Oil talking points.

“[W]e need an energy infrastructure system that can keep pace with advances in production,”Obama states in the Memo. “To promote American energy sources, we must not only extract oil — we must also be able to transport it to our world-class refineries, and ultimately to consumers.”

A metaphorical slap in the face to environmentalists who spent months working on opposing Keystone XL, Obama argued a more efficient, less bureaucratic means of approval was compulsory.

“[A]s part of my Administration’s broader efforts to improve the performance of Federal permitting and review processes, we must make pipeline infrastructure a priority … supporting projects that can contribute to economic growth and a secure energy future,” the memo reads.

Though the order issued an expedited permitting process for Keystone XL’s southern half, it also foreshadowed that expedited permitting would become the “new normal” going forward for all domestic oil and gas pipeline projects.

“To address the existing bottleneck in Cushing, as well as other current or anticipated bottlenecks, agencies shall … coordinate and expedite their reviews … as necessary to expedite decisions related to domestic pipeline infrastructure projects that would contribute to a more efficient domestic pipeline system for the transportation of crude oil,” the memo states in closing.

The memo also notes all projects placed in the expedited permitting pile can have their statuses tracked on the online Federal Infrastructure Projects Dashboard, with 48 projects currently listed.

Little time was wasted building the XL’s southern half after Obama issued the Order and within a slim two years, TransCanada will have its first direct line from Alberta to Gulf Coast refineries in southern Texas.

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: