Nebraska’s Supreme Court on Friday cleared the route for the Keystone XL pipeline, removing a major hurdle for the project as Congress and the president fight over it.
The state court’s decision comes on the same day the House of Representatives passed a bill approving construction of the pipeline. The Senate plans to pass the bill as well, but President Barack Obama is vowing to veto it and there doesn’t appear to be enough congressional support to override Obama’s veto.
The House passed the bill authorizing Keystone on a mostly partisan vote of 266 to 153, with just 28 Democrats voting for the measure.
The White House said the president is waiting for a final State Department ruling on whether Keystone is in the national interest before deciding whether it should go forward.
The controversial pipeline would mostly bring Canadian oil from the Alberta oil sands to refineries on the U.S. Gulf Coast. The Nebraska Supreme Court on Friday declined to support challenges to a state law that allows the governor to bypass the state Public Service Commission and approve the pipeline’s route through Nebraska.