Jan 18, 10:04 AM EST

Developer says it's moving forward with Keystone XL pipeline


LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) -- The developer of the Keystone XL pipeline says it is moving forward with its plans and hopes to begin construction next year.

TransCanada Corp. said Thursday that its decision builds on the Nebraska Public Service Commission's decision to approve a route through the state on Nov. 20.

The company based in Calgary, Canada, says it has secured enough long-term commitments from oil companies to ship approximately 500,000 barrels per day through the pipeline.

The project faces opposition from environmental groups, property owners along the route and Native American tribes, who view it as a threat to groundwater and property rights.

The Nebraska commission's vote to approve a route through the state removed one of the last regulatory obstacles for the project, although it still could face years of court challenges.

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