One of the managers of the Keystone XL pipeline said on Monday that "hundreds of layoffs have already begun due to Biden's halt on construction."
"Right now, the numbers of jobs, are thousands of jobs...," manager said, adding that "There's hundreds of guys that got laid off" last Tuesday in anticipation of Biden halting the construction.
The jobs affect unionized workers on both sides of the border. The manager noted, "A lot of them live in Wisconsin. Yes. That's an important point to note."
In one of his first of several executive orders enacted in his first three days in office, President Joe Biden revoked the permit for Calgary based TC Energy's Keystone XL pipeline. The Progressive Contractors Association of Canada said the pipeline would have generated as many as 60,000 jobs in Canada and the US.
Following the action, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau stated his opposition to the move, and said "While we welcome the President's commitment to fight climate change, we are disappointed but acknowledge the President’s decision to fulfill his election campaign promise on Keystone XL."
Last Thursday, US Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) asked Biden Transportation Secretary nominee Pete Buttigieg during a Senate confirmation hearing "And with the stroke of a pen, President Biden has told those 11,000 workers, those union workers, 'Your jobs are gone.' Mr. Buttigieg, what do you say to those workers whose jobs have just been eliminated by presidential edict?"
Buttigieg answered that Biden’s plan to combat climate change would create a net increase in jobs, to which Cruz responded, "So, for those workers, the answer is someone else will get a job?"
Buttigieg replied, "The answer is that we are very eager to see those workers continue to be employed in good-paying union jobs, even if they might be different ones." It is unclear how that transition of 11,000 workers from one form of work to another form of work in an industry with which they are unfamiliar would happen.
As previously reported by The Post Millennial, Biden had stated for months that he intended to cancel the project if elected despite energy companies having spent billions of dollars over the years trying to make the project a reality. The cancellation will also likely lead to an additional thousands of unionized workers being laid off. TC Energy had made deals with four labour unions to make the project a reality. Five Indigenous tribes also had agreements to take a $785-million ownership stake in the project.
The pipeline was rejected by the Obama administration 2015, causing TC Energy to file a lawsuit and a multibillion-dollar North American Free Trade Agreement claim against the US government. Former President Donald Trump supported the project and allowed work on the pipeline to proceed.