The First Nations alliance investing up to $1 billion in the Keystone XL pipeline is planning to purchase a 12-per-cent stake in the project, according to its chief executive officer.

“The plan is to invest a 12-per-cent equity stake in the Keystone pipeline,” Natural Law Energy (NLE) CEO Travis Meguinis said in an interview. “But also, there’s a lot of different projects along the line,” he added, noting NLE may consider investing in other TC Energy projects.

“We’ve come this far with TC Energy – we have some great relationships there,” he said. “It’s something that we like to think about at Natural Law that we take care of like a baby.”

TC Energy Corp. announced Tuesday its agreement with NLE, which will invest in the pipeline that has faced years of regulatory uncertainty, delays, and opposition within the Indigenous community. NLE is comprised of five First Nations groups in Alberta and Saskatchewan.

Meguinis said he’s open to discussing any concerns that First Nations leaders have about the project.

“One of the major things [about the investment] is political risks, as well as social risks – and it’s a contentious issue when it comes to our First Nations,” he said.  

The future of the project, which was rejected by former U.S. president Barack Obama, then revived by the Trump administration, has come into question again with the election of Joe Biden. The president-elect’s campaign has said Biden would block the project.

NLE’s investment marks the second equity partner for Keystone XL.  In March, the province of Alberta announced it was investing $1.5 billion in the project and a $6-billion loan guarantee.

The First Nations group’s investment is dependent on NLE securing financing.