The Keystone XL pipeline just got one step closer to reality as Congress passed a bill approving the controversial project this afternoon. The bill passed with a vote of 270-152, and it will now head to the desk of President Obama, who has clearly stated he will use presidential power to veto it.

congress, government, obama, keystone xl, bill, veto, climate change, oil, senate, energy

Support in both the Senate and the House is not great enough to override Obama’s anticipated veto. For Obama, the veto would be just the third of his presidency and likely the most significant to date. Americans are deeply divided over the project, with many opposed due to concern over climate change and potential oil spills, and supporters who say the $8 billion in spending on the project will help create jobs and bolster American energy security.

Related: Keystone XL to emit 1.37 billion tons of greenhouse gasses, EPA finds

The Senate environment panel is planning its first hearing to examine Obama’s plans to cut carbon dioxide emissions from power plants 30 percent by 2030 based on 2005 levels. Achieving that goal would be a key step in the president’s efforts to address the problem of global warming.

The New York Times notes that the House is expected to announce a larger energy bill next week.

Via New York Times

Images via Shutterstock (1, 2)