Court orders federal agency to explain pipeline decision

CLEVELAND (AP) — The nation's top appeals court has ordered a federal agency to explain why it approved the construction of a pipeline sending substantial quantities of natural gas to Canada.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia agreed with Oberlin, Ohio, and other plaintiffs Friday that the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission failed to justify giving owners of the NEXUS Gas Transmission pipeline credit for gas shipped to Canada to prove the project's need.

Opponents argued it was unlawful for a partnership between Canada's Enbridge Inc. and Detroit's DTE Energy to force U.S. citizens to sell property so the 255-mile-long (410-kilometer) pipeline stretching across northern Ohio and into Michigan could be built.

The decision dismissed other claims and allows the pipeline to continue operating.

FERC officials declined to comment Tuesday.