South Dakota joins Keystone XL pipeline lawsuit

South Dakota joined 20 other states in suing the Biden administration over their decision to cancel the Keystone XL pipeline.
FILE - In this Nov. 3, 2015 file photo, the Keystone Steele City pumping station, into which...
FILE - In this Nov. 3, 2015 file photo, the Keystone Steele City pumping station, into which the planned Keystone XL pipeline is to connect to, is seen in Steele City, Neb.(AP Photo/Nati Harnik)
Published: Mar. 18, 2021 at 3:42 PM CDT
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PIERRE, S.D. (Dakota News Now) - South Dakota Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg joined 20 other state attorney generals, led by Montana and Texas, in filing suit in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas to block President Joe Biden’s cancellation of the Keystone XL Pipeline (KXLP).

“The power to regulate foreign and interstate commerce belongs to Congress – not the President. This is another example of Joe Biden overstepping his constitutional role to the detriment of Montanans,” said Montana Attorney General Austin Knudsen said.

The lawsuit states, “The decision to provide or withhold permission to construct and operate an oil pipeline across the international border with Canada is a regulation of international and interstate commerce. Under the Constitution, this power resides with Congress... President Biden’s decision to revoke the Keystone XL permit exceeded the scope of his authority under Article II of the Constitution.”

The lawsuit asks the court to declare the section of the Executive Order canceling the pipeline’s cross-border permit unlawful and seeks to prevent the Biden administration from taking any action to enforce the cancellation.

“President Biden’s unilateral actions violate the law to the detriment of our state,” said Ravnsborg. “The Keystone XL Pipeline would reduce emissions, strengthen our energy independence, and generate tax revenue which would benefit the State of South Dakota.”

In addition to South Dakota the states of Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Georgia, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Texas, Utah, West Virginia, and Wyoming, have joined the lawsuit as plaintiffs.

The Keystone XL pipeline would cross into the United States in northern Montana, proceed through South Dakota, and into Nebraska, where it would connect to other existing Keystone pipelines.

The pipeline has drawn criticism over a number of years from a variety of activists, namely environmental and Native American activists. President Biden terminated the pipeline’s construction hours after taking office on January 20th.

Governor Kristi Noem offered her stamp of approval for the lawsuit on social media.

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