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“Pipelines: Supreme Court Restarts Key Army Corps Permit, But Not KXL”

“The Supreme Court today [Monday] allowed the Army Corps of Engineers to resume using its streamlined water-crossing permit for the construction of new oil and gas pipelines, but it excluded the Keystone XL oil pipeline.

The high court accepted a request by the federal agency to lift a court-ordered freeze on its Nationwide Permit 12 program for authorizing dredge-and-fill activities for new pipeline projects across the country.

‘The application for stay presented to Justice Kagan and by her referred to the Court is granted in part and denied in part,' the justices wrote. ‘The district court's May 11, 2020, order granting partial vacatur and an injunction is stayed, except as it applies to the Keystone XL pipeline, pending disposition of the appeal in the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and disposition of the petition for a writ of certiorari, if such writ is timely sought.'

The U.S. District Court for the District of Montana this spring put the nationwide permit on hold for pipelines after finding the Army Corps had failed to assess the cumulative impacts of the program on endangered species before reauthorizing it in 2017.”

Niina H. Farah and Hannah Northey report for E&E News July 6, 2020.


“Justices Revive Fast Pipeline Permits, Not for Keystone XL” (Bloomberg Environment)