Is the EPA finally beginning to agree with this message?
Shutterstock / Rena Schild
The EPA would seem to agree.

TransCanada, the Canadian company that wants to build the Keystone XL pipeline, is pissed at the U.S. EPA for not quietly going along with the plan.

The EPA this week slammed the State Department’s draft environmental report on the pipeline, saying in formal comments that it has a lot of shortcomings and contains “insufficient information” on the pipeline’s potential environmental effects.

From the Montreal Gazette:

TransCanada Pipelines has accused the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency of attempting to interfere in Canadian sovereignty by recommending that the State Department explore ways the U.S. can get involved in reducing emissions from Canada’s oilsands. …

In a statement, TransCanada also said it is surprised at the EPA letter because the agency has been “intimately involved” in the environmental impact assessment process from the beginning.

If the company is surprised, it hasn’t been paying attention. The EPA slammed previous State Department environmental reports on Keystone in 2010 and 2011.

More from the Toronto Globe and Mail:

TransCanada also challenged the EPA’s view — which is shared by State — that [greenhouse gas] emissions from the oil sands are 17 per cent higher than the average crude refined in the United States on a full “well-to-wheels” basis that includes vehicle emissions. The company said the comparison is faulty because Alberta bitumen would be displacing other sources of heavy oil from Venezuela and Mexico, which produce a similar volume of emissions.

Jeez, TransCanada wonders, how many U.S. agencies does it have to manipulate just to catch a break and be allowed to ship its toxic tar-sands oil right down the middle of America so it can be processed at the Gulf Coast for export?

And guess who else is angry with the EPA for registering its professional disapproval of State’s shoddy report? Those environmental experts known as House Republicans. From The Hill:

“EPA’s comments [Monday] on the State Department’s draft EIS are the perfect example of government run amok,” said a statement from Rep. Lee Terry (R-Neb.), who in March introduced a bill that would force the State Department, which is reviewing the pipeline proposal, to approve the project.

“It’s unfortunate we have to legislate to keep government agencies from going rogue,” he added.

Republicans warned that the EPA’s letter, combined with a U.S. Court of Appeals ruling Tuesday that upheld the agency’s authority to veto a mountaintop removal coal mine permit in 2011, portend future interference from the environmental agency.

Fancy that, an agency charged with protecting the environment having the gall to work to protect the environment.