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The Latest: Keystone XL opponent says ‘fight is not over’

June 15, 2018

PIERRE, S.D. (AP) — The Latest on a developments with the Keystone XL oil pipeline (all times local):

5:25 p.m.

An attorney for an organization opposing the Keystone XL oil pipeline says the “fight is not over” after the South Dakota Supreme Court dismissed a legal appeal from project foes.

Robin Martinez, an attorney for conservation and family agriculture group Dakota Rural Action, said Thursday the high court’s decision is “disappointing.” But Martinez says the organization is regrouping and evaluating its options.

A TransCanada Corp. spokesman says the pipeline developer is pleased with the ruling, which found the courts lacked jurisdiction to hear pipeline foes’ cases and dismissed their appeal.

The Cheyenne River Sioux and Yankton Sioux tribes and Dakota Rural Action appealed to the high court after a judge affirmed state regulators’ approval for the pipeline.

It would move crude oil from Canada across Montana and South Dakota to Nebraska, where it would connect with existing pipelines feeding refineries along the Gulf Coast.

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1:55 p.m.

A TransCanada Corp. spokesman says the Keystone XL oil pipeline developer is pleased with the South Dakota Supreme Court’s decision to dismiss a legal appeal from opponents fighting the project.

The high court ruled Wednesday that a lower court lacked jurisdiction to hear pipeline foes’ cases and ended their appeal.

The project would move crude oil from Canada across Montana and South Dakota to Nebraska, where it would connect with existing pipelines feeding refineries along the Gulf Coast.

TransCanada spokesman Terry Cunha said Thursday the company is working to get needed land easements for the pipeline in Nebraska.

But Nebraska landowners have filed a lawsuit challenging the Nebraska Public Service Commission’s decision to approve a route through the state.

A separate federal lawsuit brought by Montana landowners and environmental groups seeks to overturn President Donald Trump’s decision to grant a presidential permit for the project.

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10:08 a.m.

South Dakota’s Supreme Court has dismissed an appeal from opponents of the Keystone XL oil pipeline, saying a lower court lacked jurisdiction to hear their cases.

Groups fighting TransCanada Corp.‘s pipeline appealed a judge’s decision last year upholding regulators’ approval for the pipeline to cross the state.

But the high court ruled Wednesday that justices didn’t “reach the merits of the case” because the lower court lacked jurisdiction to hear the appeal of the Public Utilities Commission’s decision.

Attorneys for appealing groups haven’t returned telephone messages requesting comment. TransCanada hasn’t responded to an email seeking comment.

The project would move crude oil from Canada across Montana and South Dakota to Nebraska, where it would connect with existing pipelines feeding refineries along the Gulf Coast.

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