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      State Department Announces Pipeline Hearing in Grand Island

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      The fight over the Keystone XL Pipeline comes to central Nebraska, with a State Department hearing April 18 in Grand Island.

      The State Department announced the hearing on Wednesday. It will be held at the Heartland Events Center.

      The State Department is working on an environmental impact statement, and is taking public testimony before completing that document.

      The meeting will give the public a chance to weigh in on the environmental impact of the proposed project. TransCanada would like to build a 1,200 mile pipeline that would pass through Nebraska.

      The state has been at the center of the fight over the pipeline. Opponents, led by Jane Kleeb of Bold Nebraska say the pipeline still poses an environmental risk to the Sandhills, even after Nebraska lawmakers forced it to be re-routed.

      The pipeline has many supporters who say it provides a source of oil from a friendly neighbor, and that construction of the pipeline would create jobs and benefit the local economy.

      Registration begins at 11 a.m. with testimony sessions from noon - 3:30 p.m. and from 4-8 p.m.

      State Department officials say they will not respond to questions during the meeting. It is a listening session only. Those who wish to speak will have to identify themselves and any organization they are affiliated with.

      No signs or banners will be allowed in the arena.

      Those who are not able to speak at the meeting can submit written remarks: Comments can be submitted by the following methods:

      • e-mail at keystonecomments@state.gov; or • mailed to the following address: U.S. Department of State Attn: Genevieve Walker, NEPA Coordinator 2201 C Street NW, Room 2726 Washington, D.C. 20520

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