Keystone XL Pipeline's impact on Houston

By Anoushah Rasta - Anchor/Reporter

HOUSTON - After a lengthy political tug-of-war on Capitol Hill, the U.S. House passed a bill 252-161 to approve the Keystone Pipeline Friday.

Supporters argue the pipeline would create more jobs and secure a better future for the energy industry here, but opponents say the pipeline is more beneficial to other countries.

Charles McConnell is the executive director of Rice University's energy and environment initiative.

He was the assistant secretary of energy for two years during the Obama Administration. He says the Keystone Pipeline will carry the crude oil the United States is producing in Canada down to refineries in Texas and Louisiana to be processed.

"The long-term strategic way to move hydrocarbon, such as crude oil, is by pipeline," he said.

McConnell argues the pipeline will cut the cost of transporting the crude oil from Canada down to the Gulf while creating more jobs in Houston and the rest of the state and keeping the energy industry strong.

But at a press conference overseas, President Barack Obama disputed such claims, insisting that Keystone benefits Canada more than it does the U.S.

"It is providing the ability of Canada to pump their oil, send it through our land down to the Gulf, where it will be sold everywhere else," Obama said.

The Senate will now have to vote on the proposal Tuesday. If it passes, it'll make its way to the President's desk. There is a possibility that the President will veto the bill.

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