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House Approves Keystone XL Oil Pipeline, Bill Fails in Senate

*UPDATE: In a 59-41 vote, the Keystone XL bill was defeated on Nov. 18. Those in favor of the bill have vowed to introduce it once again when they return in January.

The House of Representatives has approved the Keystone XL oil pipeline, which means the bill now be passed on to the Senate and discussed on Nov. 18.

The House passed the bill 252-161 on Friday, Nov. 14. It is the ninth time the House has authorized the construction of the pipeline, which would run from Canada to the Gulf of Mexico and carry up to 830,000 barrels per day of crude.

The bill, sponsored by Rep. Bill Cassidy of Louisiana, has been stalled for six years for various reasons. Currently, Nebraska landowners are still challenging the creation of the pipeline. Many are concerned about the effects it could have on climate change as well as if it will help the American people with their energy and gas expenses. Environmental groups oppose the pipeline for many reasons, including the high risk that a spill could occur in various parts of the U.S. due to the length of the pipeline. In 2014, there were at least two documented oil pipeline spills in the U.S.

Senate supporters are confident that they have the 60 votes needed to approve the pipeline on Tuesday. If the bill is approved, it will head to President Obama’s desk where he will either sign it into law or veto it.

The environmental damage attorneys at Simien & Simien understand how much the approval of this pipeline could impact Louisiana and the environment. We will continue to monitor and update readers on this developing story.