White House: Keystone XL exempt from 'Buy American' push
Updated On: Mar 03, 2017
The Keystone XL pipeline will not have to comply with President Trump's executive order prioritizing the use of American steel in pipeline projects, the White House told Politico late Thursday.
“The Keystone XL pipeline is currently in the process of being constructed, so it does not count as a new, retrofitted, repaired or expanded pipeline,” a White House spokeswoman told Politico.
Despite repeated assertions from Trump that he has formally required new pipelines use American steel — a pledge he repeated in his joint address to Congress on Tuesday — the order he signed is not nearly as broad.
Trump signed an executive order in January telling the Commerce Department to write a plan “under which all new pipelines, as well as retrofitted, repaired, or expanded pipelines … use materials and equipment produced in the United States."
That measure came the same day Trump signed orders reviving the Keystone XL project, a pipeline that would bring crude oil from Canada to the Gulf Coast, which then-President Obama shot down in 2015.
The Commerce study is still in progress and it will only yield a requirement that developers use American steel “to the maximum extent possible and to the extent permitted by law,” language that raises questions about how firm the requirement will end up being.