President Donald Trump. Image courtesy of White House/Facebook.

President Donald Trump has cleared the way for two major pipeline projects to move forward on Tuesday after signing two executive orders.

Trump signed executive orders inviting TransCanada to resubmit its application for the Keystone XL pipeline.

The Obama administration officially killed the Keystone XL project in November 2015 after the U.S. State Department concluded the project would not “serve the national interest.”

The Obama administration’s decision came just days after TransCanada asked the State Department to suspend its review of the pipeline, citing ongoing legal challenges the in Nebraska.

Trump’s Keystone XL order also calls for federal officials with the Department of the Army, Department of the Interior and Department of the State to undertake all necessary reviews in an “expedited manner.”

Trump also signed an executive order on Tuesday calling for the Assistant Secretary of the Army for Civil Works and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) to “review and approve in an expedited manner” requests to construct and operate the DAPL.

Those requests include a request for an easement on Army Corps of Engineers land near Lake Oahe, North Dakota.

The Army’s Assistant Secretary for Civil Works Jo-Ellen Darcy said in December that the USACE would “not approve an easement that would allow the proposed Dakota Access Pipeline to cross under Lake Oahe in North Dakota.”

Darcy added alternative routes for the pipeline will likely be explored through an  Environmental Impact Statement with full public input and analysis.

The USACE’s decision followed a lawsuit filed last year by the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe that alleged the Corps violated historic preservation and environmental laws when it approved the pipeline.

A federal judge ruled last September that construction could move forward after finding that the tribe did not demonstrate that the DAPL was “likely to cause damage.”

Following the ruling, the USACE halted work near Lake Oahe pending further review.

According to Trump’s executive order, more than 90 percent of the DAPL has been completed and only a “limited portion remains to be constructed.”

Trump also issued an executive order on Tuesday calling for the Secretary of Commerce to  develop a plan that calls for all new pipelines in the United States to use materials and equipment produced in the United States, to the maximum extent possible and to the extent permitted by law.

That order also covers retrofitted, repaired or expanded pipelines as well as portions of pipelines within U.S. borders.


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