The ambitious pipeline deal to ship bitumen sludge from Athabasca to refineries in Texas has hit a snag.
The US State Department has delayed a decision saying it wants additional public input and environmental reviews. Washington had been expected to sign off on the project this month but now it looks as though the decision will be put off until the end of the year at the earliest.
The Keystone XL pipeline will run through Alberta, Montana, South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas. It is being fiercely opposed by US environmentalists and landowners along the designated route.