Preeminent Law Firms Find Nebraska Pipeline Siting Legislation Likely Unconstitutional
OMAHA, NEBRASKA--(Marketwire - Oct. 31, 2011) - TransCanada Corporation (TSX:TRP) (NYSE:TRP) (TransCanada) today released two detailed memoranda that analyzed the legalities of the Nebraska legislature introducing pipeline siting legislation in the coming weeks. The analyses found that introducing such legislation at this point in the approval process for Keystone XL would be unconstitutional.
The legal memos were prepared by the international law firm of Sidley Austin LLP and the firm of McGrath North Mullin & Kratz, PC LLO from Omaha, Nebraska. Both firms have extensive experience in analyzing and litigating constitutional and statutory issues.
TransCanada believes the following conclusions would be drawn from these opinions:
"We felt it was important for Nebraskans to hear from all sides in this debate. We are hopeful that this information will provide some balance and insights related to proposed draft legislation to alter the Keystone XL route," said Alex Pourbaix, TransCanada's president, Energy and Oil Pipelines. "Speaker Flood recently identified concerns with pipeline siting legislation following his own legal analysis. The conclusions raised in that legal brief are quite similar to the findings of our outside counsel's analysis."
Pourbaix adds Governor Heineman offered similar caution during his news conference October 25 when he said legislators may find that they do not have the legal or constitutional grounds to move forward with siting legislation.
Since 2008, the U.S. Department of State has been leading a comprehensive environmental review of all aspects of Keystone XL. The environmental review culminated August 26, 2011 with the release of the Final Environmental Impact Statement for the project. This review was the most detailed and comprehensive environmental review ever undertaken for a cross border pipeline.
The FEIS concluded that 'The analyses of potential impacts associated with construction and normal operation of the proposed Project suggest that there would be no significant impacts to most resources along the proposed Project corridor.' With the issuance of the FEIS, the only route that is approved for Keystone XL to follow is the approved route. It is not possible to materially move Keystone XL's route without nullifying the entire federal review and ignoring the rules that TransCanada was required to follow when making its application for a Presidential Permit.
Keystone XL would create 20,000 jobs during construction and offer Americans a choice of receiving conflict-free oil from Canada and domestic oil from the United States through the pipeline rather than higher-priced crude from the Middle East and Venezuela.
To read the legal briefs please access the following links:
With more than 60 years experience, TransCanada is a leader in the responsible development and reliable operation of North American energy infrastructure including natural gas and oil pipelines, power generation and gas storage facilities. TransCanada's network of wholly owned natural gas pipelines extends more than 57,000 kilometres (35,500 miles), tapping into virtually all major gas supply basins in North America. TransCanada is one of the continent's largest providers of gas storage and related services with approximately 380 billion cubic feet of storage capacity. A growing independent power producer, TransCanada owns, or has interests in, over 10,800 megawatts of power generation in Canada and the United States. TransCanada is developing one of North America's largest oil delivery systems. TransCanada's common shares trade on the Toronto and New York stock exchanges under the symbol TRP. For more information visit: www.transcanada.com and follow us on Twitter @TransCanada.
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