Nebraska's Public Service Commission voted 3-2 to allow the expansion of the Keystone XL Pipeline to expand into their state. The 2,600+ mile long line stretches from the Dakotas to Texas.
The Nebraska officials' decision is not the final hurdle to complete the pipeline. The commission’s decision is a legal decision subject to appeal, something opponents of the pipeline have said they will do. Developers still need to secure approval from two federal agencies, and permitting decisions in South Dakota and federally are the subject of environmentalist and tribal lawsuits.
Last Thursday, a leak southeast of Amherst, South Dakota, spilled 210,000 gallons of oil onto farmland. The leak took place near the Lake Traverse Reservation, home to the Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate. The line was closed and company spokesman Terry Cunha said Sunday that about 150 people are now at the site. Cunha said a gravel road has been completed to handle heavy equipment.