TransCanada is asking Nebraska regulators to clarify their approval of the Keystone XL pipeline, including whether the company should file an amended application for the project in light of the state's decision to alter the pipeline route.
The company is asking the Nebraska Public Service Commission to let it address technical questions that were raised by the state's Nov. 20 decision, said Robynn Tysver, a spokeswoman for Calgary-based TransCanada.
"We are not asking for the route to be reconsidered," she said.
The company still hasn't said whether it plans to build along the approved route, and its unclear how long that decision will take.
The commission ruled in favor of TransCanada's project on a 3-2 vote last week, but the approval was for a different route through the state than the company had sought. While the decision seemed to remove a key hurdle to construction of the $8 billion, 1,179-mile conduit, foes have said they believe it will let them challenge the project because the new route wasn't vetted at the same level as the original.
The change will also require TransCanada to deal with new landowners, plan and build more pumping stations and receive new approval from the Nebraska Public Power District. That process could add months, even years, to the project timeline.
Landowners opposed to the pipeline, which has been on the drawing boards since 2008, followed TransCanada's filing with their own request for oral arguments on the company's motion. The Public Service Commission had no mechanism for approving the alternate route, according to the landowners' filing.
The line would send oil sands from Hardisty, Alberta, through Montana and South Dakota to Nebraska, where it would connect to pipelines leading to U.S. Gulf Coast refineries.