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Keystone XL pipeline: Obama to oil progress as pump prices rise


From the Guardian:

Barack Obama is expected to speed up approval of the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline on Thursday after taking to the road with what the White House is billing as an "all of the above" energy tour.

Obama's planned visit to the oil hub of Cushing, Oklahoma, on day two of the energy tour has raised expectations he will speed up approval of the southern US-only segment of the pipeline, running from the town to Port Arthur, Texas.

The approval, which would infuriate environmental groups, could allow construction on that portion to begin before November's presidential elections instead of next year.

Obama's tour starts with a visit to the country's biggest operating solar farm in Boulder City, Nevada. The White House said in a statement: "The president will highlight his administration's focus on diversifying our energy portfolio, including expanding renewable energy from sources like wind and solar, which thanks in part to investments made by this administration is set to double in the president's first term."

But the visit seemed a detour on a trip apparently solidly focused on fossil fuels and the price of gas at the pump.

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