Pipeline ruling draws mixed reactions

For some, dismay and anger followed the Nebraska Public Service Commission’s decision to approve the Keystone XL pipeline.

While the route they OK’d is not the one TransCanada preferred, many Nebraska landowners say it’s a threat to their soil and the state’s aquifer.

"That Ogallala Aquifer is one of Nebraska’s—I think it’s the greatest resource we have in Nebraska," said Art Tanderup, whose land is impacted by both routes.  "And we as a state have to do everything we can to protect that resource.  And what just happened is not protecting that resource."

It wasn’t all jeers for pipeline opponents.

"It’s amazing to me that a group of unruly citizens, if you will…has beat a multi–billion dollar corporation," said Bold Nebraska’s Jane Kleeb.

Opponents said while a pipeline was approved, the route will delay TransCanada at least two more years to get the project going.

"Going into this decision, anything other than them getting their preferred route was going to be a victory for us," Kleeb said.  "Because now it opens up all these other legal challenges that we have at our fingertips, because they have to get this route now approved by the federal government."

There are similarly mixed feelings on the other side.

TransCanada did not get the route they wanted, but a pipeline is still possible.

In a statement, the company said, in part:

"We will conduct a careful review of the commission’s ruling while assessing how the decision would impact the cost and schedule of the project."

Governor Ricketts, who supports the Keystone XL, issued a statement saying, in part:

"While TransCanada’s preferred route was not selected, I understand that the company is reviewing the PSC’s decision, and hope that they bring this job–creating project to Nebraska."

While Transcanada is figuring its next move, opponents said they will continue to fight any construction efforts.