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Judge rejects bid to block Alberta Clipper pipeline upgrade

By STEVE KARNOWSKI
Associated Press

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — A federal judge has rejected the key claims in a lawsuit that sought to block a capacity expansion on the Alberta Clipper oil pipeline across northern Minnesota.

U.S. District Judge Michael Davis said in his ruling Wednesday that the State Department’s actions that gave Enbridge Energy a green light to move forward weren’t the kinds of final decisions that courts can overturn.

A coalition of tribal, environmental and climate change groups had argued that the State Department should not have allowed a temporary workaround that lets Canadian-based Enbridge Energy move more tar sands crude across the border without triggering an environmental review.

But the government countered that all the State Department did in this case was to confirm to Enbridge that the company already had the legal authority to proceed.

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