TOLUCA, Mexico Feb 19 U.S. President Barack
Obama said on Wednesday his administration needed to follow its
established process to decide whether to allow the Keystone XL
crude oil pipeline from Canada to go ahead, stressing that
concerns about climate change needed to be at the forefront of
"I said previously that how Keystone impacted greenhouse gas
emissions would affect our decision, but frankly it has to
affect all of our decisions at this stage," Obama told a news
conference concluding a North American summit.
The U.S. government has been studying TransCanada Corp's
proposed pipeline since 2008, but its review recently
entered a new stage during which agencies and the public can
weigh in before Obama makes his final call about whether the
project is in the national interest.
That could still take months.
A Nebraska court ruling on Wednesday created another snag
for the project, but Obama and Canadian Prime Minister Stephen
Harper were not asked about the judgment on the process used to
approve the route in that state.
The drawn-out process has created friction between Canada
and the United States.
"I know it's been extensive and at times, I'm sure Stephen
feels, a little too laborious," Obama said.
Harper told reporters at the news conference that a recent
U.S. State Department report showed the pipeline would not
accelerate climate change.
"In terms of climate change, I think the State Department
report was pretty definitive on that particular issue," Harper