China, Keystone In a Showdown Over Oil Pipeline
By Stephen R. Kelly
A Chinese oil company last week bought a small but significant player in the Canadian oil sands, the third-largest deposit of accessible oil in the world and the source of more than a quarter of U.S. oil imports.
The sale of Nexen to the Chinese National Offshore Oil Company, or CNOOC, for $15.1 billion was the largest Chinese overseas acquisition ever, and continues a patient, strategic Chinese campaign to secure energy assets in North America.
Also last week, the U.S. State Department issued its latest environmental report card on the long-delayed Keystone XL pipeline, which would bring more of that oil sands crude from Canada to Nebraska and on to the U.S. Gulf Coast.
Americans have a love-hate relationship with Canadian oil, as thousands of anti-Keystone demonstrators in Washington recently reaffirmed. The Chinese are clearly not so conflicted.
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