Viewpoints: The Wisconsin GOP congressional delegation’s letter to Biden about the Keystone XL pipeline project

Editor’s note: On Wednesday, Jan. 20, the Wisconsin Republican congressional delegation, including Rep. Bryan Steil, Rep. Glenn Grothman, Rep. Mike Gallagher, Rep. Tom Tiffany and Rep. Scott Fitzgerald, sent a letter to newly inaugurated President Joe Biden, urging him to support he completion of the Keystone XL pipeline project. In one of his first actions as president, Biden said he was revoking a key permit for the project. Following is the letter sent from the Republican congressional delegation to Biden about the issue:

Dear President Biden:

Bryan Steil

We write to you today in support of the completion of the Keystone XL project. At a time when good jobs will help the nation recover from the economic downturn caused by COVID-19, the Keystone XL project will continue to be a positive step forward. Terminating this project will come at a huge cost to Wisconsinites and all Americans.

In keeping with your goals to “Build Back Better,” Keystone XL would provide an excellent opportunity for you to make good on those promises. Keystone XL has committed to complete the project using union labor, creating thousands of union jobs, including more than 7,000 American union jobs in 2021 alone. Keystone XL has also committed to investing more than $10 million to create a Green Jobs Training Fund to help train union workers for jobs on a growing number of renewable energy projects expected in the coming years and become the first pipeline to be fully powered by renewable energy.

While completing Keystone XL will mean a great deal domestically, this project will provide security to the global economy as well. The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) estimates our country’s crude oil and petroleum product gross exports have more than doubled over the past six years since the oil export ban was lifted in 2015. These exports not only benefit the U.S. economy, but ensure our allies’ energy security, regardless of the volatile political climates they may face with geographically closer trading partners.

A number of stakeholders have made a multi-billion dollar commitment towards American energy independence, which includes Keystone XL. This large-scale construction project will provide significant economic benefits to local communities and citizens most in need due to economic hardship. Keystone XL will continue to develop and administer innovative ways to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions, while providing reliable energy.

For over a decade, members of Congress from both sides of the aisle have expressed support for the Keystone XL project. As representatives for the state of Wisconsin, we know firsthand the impact this project will have in our communities. Not only will it provide thousands of good-paying jobs for hardworking Wisconsin families, but also benefit all Wisconsinites with lower gas prices at the pump. We respectfully ask for your full consideration in the continuation of this important project and thank you for your attention to this matter.

Signed,

Glenn Grothman, member of Congress; Mike Gallagher, member of Congress; Bryan Steil, member of Congress; Tom Tiffany, member of Congress; Scott Fitzgerald, member of Congress.

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