HELENA, Mont. – Governor Greg Gianforte today visited Phillips and Valley counties, where he saw firsthand the impacts of President Joe Biden’s decision to shut down the Keystone XL Pipeline project.
After the visits, Governor Gianforte issued the following statement:
“President Biden’s decision to shut down the Keystone XL Pipeline project is devastating to Montana. Today, we heard from Montanans who invested millions in their businesses in anticipation of this project and the economic boost it would bring their communities.
“We heard from school administrators and parents, who had anticipated increased revenues to recruit and pay teachers to educate their kids.
“We heard from officials with electric cooperatives, who had plans to build dozens of miles of transmission lines to the pipeline – bringing electricity to some of the region’s most rural areas.
“We heard from the local chamber of commerce, about how the project would have benefited their local businesses, created good-paying Montana jobs, and boosted our economy.
“And we heard from Montanans, who were once optimistic about what the Keystone XL Pipeline project could mean for their treasured rural communities.
“With the stroke of a pen, President Biden took all of that away. I join these Montanans in sending a loud and clear message to President Biden: your Keystone XL decision must be reversed.”
During the visit, Governor Gianforte visited a Keystone XL pipe yard where he met the president of Barnard Construction. Before President Biden’s executive order, the company was beginning construction on the first 90 miles of the project in Montana.
Governor Gianforte later met with representatives of Big Flat Electric Cooperative, one of several coops that had invested capital to prepare to build transmission lines to the project.
To conclude the visit, the governor hosted a public roundtable with community stakeholders and residents, where he heard about the impacts of the project’s shutdown on local businesses, schools, and families.