NEW YORK Three
Republican congressmen have criticized President Obamas
comments on the potential for job creation by TransCanada
Corp.s Keystone XL pipeline.
Obama told the New
York Times in a recent interview that Keystone XL might
create "maybe 2,000 jobs during the construction of the
project, which might take a year or two," and "after that
were talking about somewhere between 50 and 100 jobs in
an economy of 150 million working people.
Reps. Frederick Upton
(R., Mich.), Ed Whitfield (R., Ky.) and Lee Terry (R., Neb.)
disputed the numbers in a letter to the President, pointing out
a State Department assessment of the pipeline estimated it
could "potentially support 42,100 average annual jobs across
the United States."
TransCanada said in an
e-mailed statement on the Presidents remarks that it had
already signed agreements with labor unions on the number of
workers required to build Keystone XL that are above the
Presidents figure. "Unions are not in the habit of
negotiating meaningless agreements with inflated numbers with
companies," the Calgary, Alberta-based pipeline company
The congressmen also
expressed concern about the pace of the approval process for
the pipeline, which has been on the drawing board since 2009,
with the State Department "likely at least a year away" from
completing the projects environmental impact review and
national interest determination, they wrote in the letter.
The department is
currently reviewing public comments it received on Keystone
XLs draft supplemental environmental impact statement
published earlier this year.