TransCanada Corporation says it is moving forward with a 1.1 million barrel per day (bbl/d) Energy East Pipeline project based on binding, long-term contracts received from producers and refiners. The conclusion of the successful open season confirmed strong market support for a pipeline with approximately 900,000 bbl/d of firm, long-term contracts to transport crude oil from Western Canada to Eastern Canadian refineries and export terminals, according to a statement issued by the company.
“We are very pleased with the outcome of the open season for the Energy East Pipeline held earlier this year and are excited to move forward with a major project that will bring many benefits across Canada,” said Russ Girling, TransCanada’s president and chief executive officer. “This is an historic opportunity to connect the oil resources of western Canada to the consumers of eastern Canada, creating jobs, tax revenue and energy security for all Canadians for decades to come.”
Girling added that interest in Energy East supports refineries’ desire to have access to a stable and reliable supply of Western Canadian crude oil – pushing out more expensive crude oil from foreign regimes. Eastern Canada currently imports approximately 700,000 bbl/d. It also confirms the desire producers have to support safe and innovative ways to get their crude oil to market.
“Energy East is one solution for transporting crude oil but the industry also requires additional pipelines such as Keystone XL to transport growing supplies of Canadian and U.S. crude oil to existing North American markets,” added Girling in an Aug. 1 statement. “Both pipelines are required to meet the need for safe and reliable pipeline infrastructure and are underpinned with binding, long-term agreements.”
The project is expected to cost approximately $12 billion, excluding the transfer value of Canadian Mainline natural gas assets. The Energy East Pipeline will have a capacity of approximately 1.1 million bbl/d and is anticipated to be in service by late-2017 for deliveries in Québec and 2018 for deliveries to New Brunswick.
The Energy East Pipeline project involves converting a portion of natural gas pipeline capacity in approximately 3,000 kilometres (1,864 miles) of TransCanada’s existing Canadian Mainline to crude oil service and constructing approximately 1,400 kilometres (870 miles) of new pipeline. The pipeline will transport crude oil from receipt points in Alberta and Saskatchewan to delivery points in Montréal, the Québec City region and Saint John, New Brunswick, greatly enhancing producer access to Eastern Canadian and international markets. The pipeline will terminate at Canaport in Saint John, New Brunswick where TransCanada and Irving Oil have formed a joint venture to build, own and operate a new deep water marine terminal.
While Energy East will use a portion of Canadian Mainline capacity, TransCanada is committed to continuing to meet the needs of its gas customers in eastern Canada and the N.E. United States.
Our 60 years of pipeline experience has taught us that to advance a project of this size, we must engage in open and meaningful discussions with Aboriginal communities and key stakeholder groups. TransCanada has been out in the field collecting data and engaging with Aboriginal and stakeholder groups for the past several months as part of its initial design and planning work for the project and that will continue.
“TransCanada is a leading North American energy infrastructure company with one of the best safety records in the industry and that is something we are very proud of,” concluded Girling. “Energy East will be designed and operated with a singular focus on safety – that is what Canadians expect and that is what TransCanada will deliver. We all recognize that oil is essential in our daily lives. We need it to heat our homes, operate our vehicles and make thousands of products we rely on every day. What we must do is ensure the oil is transported safely and reliably.”
The company intends to proceed with the necessary regulatory applications for approvals to construct and operate the pipeline project and terminal facilities in early 2014.