After Years-Long Legal Debate, Judge Gives Final Ruling On Keystone XL Pipeline

The 9th Circuit of Appeals issued a rare ruling in President Trump’s favor on Thursday when they struck down a challenge to stop the construction of the Keystone XL pipeline brought on by environmentalists.

According to the Washington Examiner, a lower court ruling in Montana stopped the pipeline’s construction as the environmental review on the original pipeline permit was deemed inadequate.

Trump then took matters into his own hand, issuing a new presidential permit—which the 9th Circuit Court is upholding.

From the report:

But the victory may be short-lived, as tribal groups already sued in April to block the new permit. TC Energy, the company building the pipeline, recently told investors that it does not plan to begin construction in 2019.

“Despite today’s ruling, we remain confident that Keystone XL will never be built,” said Doug Hayes, senior attorney with Sierra Club. “This proposed project has been stalled for a decade because it would be all risk and no reward, and despite the Trump administration’s efforts, they cannot force this dirty tar sands pipeline on the American people.”

Other groups blasted the appeals court’s ruling. The Center for Biological Diversity said the court was condoning Trump’s “blatant disregard” for environmental laws.

According to the report, environmental groups are both challenging the permit and the pipeline at-large. This could leave the door open for future resistance but, for now, Trump is in the clear:

Environmental groups immediately began rallying their legal resources to push back against the new Trump permit.

“We will explore all available legal avenues to stop this dirty tar sands oil pipeline from ever being built and endangering our communities and climate,” said Jackie Prange, a senior attorney at the Natural Resources Defense Council.