Canadian Oil Company Trying To Seize Nebraskans' Land For Keystone Pipeline

| by Michael Allen

TransCanada, the oil company that wants to build the Keystone XL pipeline through the middle of the U.S., is trying to take away land that belongs to Nebraskans.

According to the Los Angeles Times, TransCanada filed papers in court for eminent domain against 90 Nebraska landowners today in order to get access to their land for the Keystone Pipeline.

TransCanada’s Keystone projects land manager Andrew Craig defended the Canadian company's actions in a statement, "Eminent domain is a last resort and our first priority is always to negotiate voluntary agreements with landowners. We have made numerous offers to negotiate generous agreements with landowners. We have waited as long as we could under state law before beginning the process – as we said we would.”

Eminent domian is normally used by the U.S. government for projects such as highways.

Nebraska passed a law in 2012 to allow its governor to bypass the state Public Service Commission and approve the $5.3-billion Keystone Pipeline on people's land, however a court ruled that law unconstitutional in February 2013. That ruling was overruled on Jan. 9 by the Nebraska Supreme Court.

President Obama has signaled he will veto a Keystone Pipeline bill, which Republicans strongly support. The GOP has consistently claimed that the Keystone Pipeline will help domestic production and drop oil prices in the U.S.

However, the Midland Reporter-Telegram reports that American companies are actually slowing down production because crude oil prices have dropped below $50 a barrel.

Apache Corp, ConocoPhillips, Concho Resources, Rosetta Resources, Diamondback Energy, Bold Energy III LLC, Henry Resources and Linn Energy have all announced oil production cuts because oil prices have plunged.

Former Alaska governor Sarah Palin, House Speaker John Boehner (R), Mitt Romney and other Republicans have consistently claimed that American oil prices would drop if the U.S. government would allow more drilling.

In reality, American companies are choosing not to drill as much because prices are too low and they're hoping less supply will hike prices back up on Americans.

Sources: Los Angeles Times, Midland Reporter-Telegram
Image Credit: TransCanada Logo