Kerry to Baird: U.S. Will Not Rush Decision on XL Pipeline Project

This article was last updated on April 16, 2022

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In response to Canadian government’s public pressure on the Obama administration to make a decision on XL pipeline now even if means the answer is no, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry mentioned in a statement issued on Friday that his government will not rush into making a decision. He mentioned adamantly that “I always answer my Canadian friends,” when accused of having spent a year since he alleged that a decision would come soon on the controversial and long-delayed $5.4-billion pipeline.

In a joint press conference of U.S.-Canada-Mexico officials intended to celebrate their seamless trading environment created by NAFTA, Mr. Kerry alleged “but we have to do it according to our administrative processes.” Signaling Canada’s Foreign Minister, John Baird, who stood beside him, Mr. Kerry mentioned that “he understands that.” However, despite that assurances, Mr. Kerry did not signal towards the time when a decision could finally be announced by President Barack Obama. Moreover, Mr. Baird also refrained from indicating that he understood or accepted the ongoing delays.

Highlighting that it has been almost 26 months since Hillary Clinton, Mr. Kerry’s predecessor, requested him to make changes to the Keystone XL route to protect aquifers in the United States, Mr. Baird mentioned that “obviously, we want a decision soon.” Consequently, Keystone XL is still an undecided and uncertain project even after five years since it was first proposed. Mr. Baird’s recent bold demand of a quick answer implies that the delay is casting stains on the U.S.-Canada relations.

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