A case will be decided by the state Supreme Court, but the battle over the Keystone XL oil pipeline extends well beyond a Nebraska court room.
Supreme Court justices weigh oral arguments in the case against the state law that authorized the Keystone XL route through Nebraska.
But, the author of the bill signed into law, state Sen. Jim Smith of Papillion, insists opponents really aren’t aiming at the law.
“The ideology of the opponents to the pipeline is that they want no fossil fuel. They do not want to move any of the North American oil to the refineries,” according to Smith. “Whether the oil comes from North Dakota or from Canada. That’s really irrelevant in this argument for them.”
Both those for Keystone XL and those opposed crowded into the Nebraska Capitol on Friday to hear the oral arguments and make their presence known.
Four landowners have challenge the law passed by the Unicameral that has shifted authorization to select the route of oil pipelines through Nebraska from the Public Service Commission to the governor. They claim the legislature violated the state constitution by by-passing the PSC.
The landowners won at the lower level. The state appealed to the Supreme Court which has taken the case under advisement and will rule later.
Bold Nebraska has been a vocal opponent of TransCanada from the beginning. It argues the production of crude oil from the oil sands of western Canada is extremely harmful to the environment.
Bold Nebraska’s Jane Kleeb makes it no secret she wants to stop TransCanada from building Keystone XL and that she enjoys being at ground zero.
“So, Nebraska continues to be the lynchpin in the Keystone XL pipeline and nobody would have guessed that on day one.”
AUDIO: Brent Martin reports [:45]