New Challenges to Trans Mountain Expansion Allowed

The long-delayed Trans Mountain pipeline has again ran into legal obstacles. On Wednesday Canada's Federal Court of Appeal agreed to hear six challenges to the Canadian government's earlier approval of an expansion of the Trans Mountain oil pipeline.

The court said that the six challenges related to the government's duty to consult aboriginals, called First Nations and that they must proceed on strict, short deadlines.

"The applicants do acknowledge that the Government of Canada introduced some new initiatives to assist consultation and added some conditions on the project approval that was ultimately given," the court said in its decision. "But to them this is just window-dressing, box-ticking and nice-sounding words, not the hard work of taking on board their concerns, exploring possible solutions, and collaborating to get to a better place."

As some indigenous groups fear spills and the continued expansion of Alberta's oil sands, projects to expand or build new Canadian pipelines have become deeply contentious in recent years.

"The (project) has already undergone a lengthy, thorough and extensive regulatory review process, including extensive consultation with all stakeholders," Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers Chief Executive Tim McMillan said in a statement.

Source:
reuters

Trans Mountain Pipeline Construction Work Restarts

A year after the project’s latest regulatory setback, construction on parts of the Trans Mountain pipeline is restarting, Trans Mountain Corp said on Wednesday. The pipeline was bought last year by the Canadian government to help ensure the completion of the expansion to 890,000 barrels of oil per day after years of delay and strong disapproval by environmental and some indigenous groups.

“We are very happy that people will be in the field, digging the ground and installing the pipe,” Canada’s Minister of Natural Resource Amarjeet Sohi said at a news conference in Edmonton.

In the fourth quarter of 2019, approximately 4,200 workers are expected to be employed along the pipeline corridor and the company has issued notices to some contractors to mobilize construction equipment and crews, Trans Mountain Chief Executive Ian Anderson said in a statement.

Work is restarting at the Burnaby storage terminal where the pipeline terminates, and the Westridge marine terminal, where crude is loaded onto tankers. It will also soon begin in communities along the pipeline’s right-of-way in Alberta between Edmonton and Edson, and in the Greater Edmonton area.

Given a reason that the company failed to adequately consult indigenous groups, last year a Canadian court overturned the federal government’s 2016 approval of the project. But after a new regulatory review that gave a huge relief to Canada’s oil industry, Justin Trudeau’s Liberal government re-approved the pipeline in June.

Source:
reuters

Open Season initiated for Canadian Mainline

Kallanish Energy reported that Enbridge has announced an open season to solicit transportation services on the Canadian Mainline pipeline system. The open season is to provide shippers with the opportunity to enter into long-term contracts for priority transportation service on the Mainline.

The Mainline system was a common carrier system in which shippers submit monthly bids for capacity, but Enbridge is converting it to one that is mostly contracted for up to 20 years. At least 10% of capacity will remain reserved for uncommitted volumes at all times.

The open season started on August 2nd and will end on October 2nd. Subject to regulatory approval, Enbridge is seeking to have Canadian Mainline contracting take effect on July 1, 2021. The system exceeds 3,100 miles in length including multiple paths. More than 1,900 miles of the system is in the U.S., while the rest is in Canada and serves the Western Canada oil sands.

Mainline’s crude-carrying capacity will be 3.23 million barrels per day, following completion of the Line 3 Replacement project. The company will be contracting 2.9 million barrels per day and the remaining 325,000 barrels per day will remain in spot service.

Source:
kallanishenergy

Proposed Coastal Gaslink Pipeline Not Subject to Federal Regulation

Canada's National Energy Board said on Friday that TC Energy Corp's proposed 416-miles Coastal GasLink natural gas pipeline to supply the LNG Canada project in northern British Columbia is not subject to federal regulation.

According to the board’s decision, the company will not have to submit a new application for approval and cuts the risk of extra regulatory scrutiny delaying construction. The pipeline will run from Dawson Creek in the northeast of the province to the proposed LNG facility near Kitimat on the Pacific coast.

"Coastal GasLink is an integral part of LNG Canada and pipeline development is key for the timing of the project coming online," Wood Mackenzie analyst Dulles Wang said. "That (pipeline development) has always been viewed as one of the biggest risk factors and this decision clears that up."

Source:
pgjonline

TC Energy Received Probable Violation Notice from PHMSA

TC Oil Operations, the company that owns Keystone pipeline failed to provide suitable coating material at numerous locations along the pipeline, according to The Pipeline and Hazardous Material Safety Administration. A notice of probable violation was issued by PHMSA as a result of an inspection of the Keystone Pipeline’s facilities and records.

PHMSA didn’t proposed any fines as a result of the probable violation, rather proposed a compliance order that requires TC Oil to “correct deficiencies in coating material so that they are suitable for prevention of atmospheric corrosion.”

According to the notice, the company also needs to provide a “record of the location of piping with insufficient coating and the date in which the appropriate coating was applied.”

“The operator used fusion bonded epoxy as a coating on numerous locations on the pipeline at and above the air soil interface,” the notice reads. TC Energy has six months from the date of the final order to comply.

The 2,600 miles pipeline runs from eastern Alberta, Canada, to Oklahoma and Illinois, and carries crude oil.

Source:
duluthnewstribune

Indian Tribe in Wisconsin Sues Enbridge

A lawsuit against Enbridge Inc. was filed on Tuesday by the Bad River band of Lake Superior Chippewa aimed at forcing the company to shut down Line 5 pipeline that crosses tribal lands in northern Wisconsin.

Line 5 pipeline transports oil and natural gas liquids from Canada to Michigan. This includes a controversial section that runs along the bed of the Straits of Mackinac between Lake Michigan and Lake Huron. 

Enbridge is seeking to build a tunnel beneath the straits for a new pipeline, but tribal officials say that they no longer want Enbridge to operate the pipeline on tribal lands and fear that a rupture would pose grave environmental damage to the Bad River and other waters that flow to Lake Superior.

“As a community, we are sick of having to bear the fear and anxiety of this line being a constant threat to our community and resources,” said Dylan Bizhikiins Jennings, a tribal member. An Enbridge pipeline spill in 2010 on the Kalamazoo River in Michigan took years and more than $1 billion to clean up. 

“Enbridge has been in good faith negotiations with the Bad River band of Lake Superior Chippewa tribe regarding these easements since 2013,” said Enbridge spokeswoman Juli Kellner in a statement. Line 5 pipeline crosses about 12 miles of reservation lands, according to court documents.

Source:
jsonline

Enbridge Announced Open Seasons on Express Pipeline

Open seasons for existing and expanded capacities on the Express Pipeline Limited Partnership pipeline in Canada has been announced by Enbridge Inc. The service originates at Hardisty, Alberta and has delivery points on the Express Pipeline LLC pipeline in the US.

"Given the shortage of pipeline capacity out of the Western Canadian Sedimentary Basin, Enbridge has been exploring options to provide industry with incremental near-term capacity," said Guy Jarvis, Executive Vice President Liquids Pipelines. "The efficient expansion capacity on the Express Pipeline being offered in this open season will provide additional takeaway capacity, which we believe will be well received by the shipping community."

The open season for existing capacity will begin at 8 am MDT on 3 July 2019 and end at 12 pm MDT on 7 August 2019 and the open season for expanded capacity will begin at 8 am MDT on 3 July 2019 and end at 12 pm MDT on 23 August 2019.

Source:
worldpipelines

$145 Million Deal to Buy Shell Canada Gas Assets by Pieridae Energy

Pieridae Energy, based in Canada will buy gas assets from Royal Dutch Shell for 145 million, Pieridae said on Wednesday. This will secure supply for Pieridae’s proposed Goldboro LNG plant in Nova Scotia, which will be Canada’s first east coast LNG project, producing 10 million tons per year.

“Not only does this deal help us secure the remaining conventional natural gas supply needed for the first train of the Goldboro LNG project, it makes Pieridae a major player in the Alberta midstream and upstream industry,” said Pieridae Chief Executive Alfred Sorensen.

All of Shell’s midstream and upstream assets in the southern Alberta Foothills area is included in the deal and these assets will produce 29,000 barrels of natural gas, natural gas liquids and condensate. Also Shell said in a statement that Pieridae will retain all site-based Shell employees and some Calgary-based employees who support the Foothills assets.

“We are pleased they (the assets) are going to a buyer with a strong focus on safety, community and environmental stewardship, and one that is well placed to take these assets to the next stage of their development,” Shell Canada President Michael Crothers said.

Source:
reuters

Trans Mountain Pipeline Expansion Project Receives Approval from Canadian Government

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s government approved the C$9.3 billion Trans Mountain pipeline expansion project that will link Alberta’s oil sands to a port near Vancouver, British Columbia.  

The pipeline was purchased by the government from Kinder Morgan a year ago to ensure its expansion. The pipeline project has set Canadian provinces against each other, opened rifts among its Indigenous communities and prompted major protests.

The project is a critical component of Mr. Trudeau’s longstanding position that Canada needs to maintain a strong energy industry to support its efforts to mitigate climate change.

The oil industry in Canada has increasingly turned to trains to ship its products from the oil sands, due to the pipeline bottlenecks. This method of shipment is both costly and potentially dangerous because of the risk of derailments. Due to the transportation issues, the oil industry in Alberta was forced to sell its product at a discount.

Source:
nytimes

Cactus II Pipeline Tariff Waiver Request Denied

A new request to remove import tariffs on steel for Plains All American's Cactus II crude oil pipeline system got rejected by the Trump administration.

The U.S. Commerce Department had already denied Cactus II's similar request last year, citing the same reason that the waiver request was not a "complete submission". The company requested to waive import tariffs on hundreds of miles of steel pipeline imported from Greece.

The 25% steel import tariff announced in March 2018. The department has rejected waivers for 517.6K metric tons of steel, while granted waivers for 153.7K metric tons of steel, Argus reports.

Although, majority of requests from the oil and gas industry to win exemptions was lost to Department of Commerce, the department lifted the tariff on pipeline that Cheniere had proposed to import from Canada for its planned 1.4 billion cubic feet per day Midship natural gas.

Source:
seekingalpha

Trans Mountain Oil Pipeline Expansion Likely to Proceed

The controversial expansion of Trans Mountain oil pipeline will be proceeded by the Canadian government. Justin Trudeau’s federal cabinet will meet to discuss the expansion on June 18 and the plan is to double the pipeline flow out of Alberta to the west coast in British Columbia, Bloomberg reported.

The expansion would add 590,000 barrels of daily shipping capacity and will be a boon for Canadian oil drillers struggling from a lack of pipelines. British Columbia has been strongly opposing the project, which forced Kinder Morgan to reconsider its commitment to expand the Trans Mountain pipeline, and to sell the project to the Canadian government in August 2018.

The leaders advocating for the pipeline expansion is conducting consultations with First Nations regarding the project, in an attempt to address all possible concerns that opponents may have. Work on the project could start fairly quickly if the outcome of the consultations are positive.

Source:
oilprice
bloomberg

Kinder Morgan’s Steel Tariff Waiver Request Denied by Trump Administration

The Department of Commerce denied two requests from Kinder Morgan to buy tariff-free steel pipes from Turkish manufacturer Borusan Mannesmann in order to build the $1.75 billion Gulf Coast Express Pipeline in Permian Basin.

The company have a target service date of October 2019 for the 514-mile pipeline to move 2 billion cubic feet of natural gas per day from the Permian Basin of West Texas to the Agua Dulce hub near Corpus Christi.

Trump imposed a 25 percent import tax on steel and a 10 percent import tax on aluminum on most countries and extended them in June to Mexico, Canada and the European Union, in a decision taken on March 2018.

The company argued that the Gulf Coast Express Pipeline would boost exports, unlock more oil production in the Permian Basin. They also added that it will strengthen ties to Turkey, a key U.S. ally in the Middle East, but according to the Department of Commerce officials, there is a reasonable amount of pipeline available in the United States with "satisfactory quality" for the project.

Source:
chron

Trump Signs Permit to Jump-Start Delayed Construction of Keystone XL

President Donald Trump signed a new presidential permit on March 29 to approve the Keystone XL pipeline project. The new permit supersedes the permit the president signed in 2017. The presidential permit allows TransCanada to “construct, connect, operate and maintain pipeline facilities at the international border of the United States and Canada at Phillips County, Montana, for the import of oil from Canada to the United States.”

“President Trump has been clear that he wants to create jobs and advance U.S. energy security and the Keystone XL pipeline does both of those things,” said Russ Girling, TransCanada’s president and CEO. He added “The magnitude of the work on this project has been extensive. The Keystone XL pipeline has been studied more than any other pipeline in history and the environmental reviews are clear - the project can be built and operated in an environmentally sustainable and responsible way.”

The American Petroleum Institute also applauded the president’s actions. “We applaud the Administration for taking a no-nonsense approach to permitting this essential critical infrastructure project,” said API’s President and CEO, Mike Sommers. “The Keystone XL Pipeline has passed every environmental review conducted over the last decade under both the Obama and Trump administrations. Every study has concluded it can be built safely, with no significant impact to the environment.”

Multiple federal and state agencies have conducted numerous environmental reviews of the project since 2008, all of which have concluded that constructing Keystone XL is in the national interest and does not pose significant environmental impacts, the API statement added. In addition, the project was approved by Congress in 2015 and the Nebraska Public Service Commission in 2017.

Source:
napipelines

Part of $3.2 Billion Mountaineer Xpress Natural Gas Pipeline in West Virginia Gets Approval to Be Put into Service

The FERC authorized TransCanada’s request on Monday to commence service on part of its 170 miles Mountaineer XPress natural gas pipeline in West Virginia. The approved portion of pipeline stretches about 21 miles in Marshall and Wetzel Counties.

The 2.6-billion cbfd Mountaineer pipeline project was about 45 percent complete and expected to be completely finished in February/March, the company said earlier this month.

The company also said that it plans to put its $600 million Gulf XPress gas pipeline into service along with Mountaineer. The 0.88-bcfd Gulf project includes seven new compressor stations in Kentucky, Tennessee and Mississippi.

The Mountaineer and Gulf projects are two of several pipes designed to connect growing output in the Marcellus and Utica shale basins in Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Ohio with customers elsewhere in the United States and Canada.

Source:
Reuters

$4.6 Billion Mountain Valley Natural Gas Pipeline to Be Completed by Fourth-Quarter 2019.

The 303-mile Mountain Valley Pipeline  from West Virginia to Virginia is expected to be completed in the fourth quarter of 2019 despite remaining legal challenges against the project, EQM Midstream Partners revealed on Thursday.

Mountain Valley is about 70 percent complete while it works through the project’s remaining legal challenges, including securing a Nationwide 12 Permit from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for stream and waterbody crossings, the company said.

The pipeline is designed to deliver 2 billion cubic feet per day and is one of the biggest pipelines under construction to connect growing output in the Marcellus and Utica shale basins in Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Ohio with customers in other parts of the United States and Canada.

Source:
Reuters

TransCanada to be Renamed to TC Energy

TransCanada announced on Wednesday that it will change its name to TC Energy.

After years of building hundreds of miles of oil and gas pipelines in both the United States and Mexico, TransCanada has decided to change its name to TX Energy to better reflect its performance as a major pipeline and power generator for all of North America.

"TC Energy better reflects the breadth of our business and acknowledges our proud history of safely and responsibly delivering the energy that millions of North Americans rely on every day," said TransCanada Chief Executive Russ Girling.

The decision will require shareholder approval. TransCanada intends to continue trading under “TRP” after adopting the new name.

Source:
Chron

Enbridge's Pipeline Explosion Forces 100 to Evacuate

Enbridge’s natural gas transmission pipeline erupted into flames after a rupture occurred at around 5:30 pm on Tuesday. The explosion forced about 100 nearby locals to evacuate their homes.

Enbridge spokesman Michael Barnes said in an emailed statement that the explosion happened 13.5 kilometers from Prince George.

“Enbridge emergency crews have responded, have isolated and are currently depressurizing two natural gas transmission lines in the vicinity to contain the incident,” he said. “The incident area has been cordoned off to maintain public safety.”

Most residents were allowed back into their homes Wednesday after the evacuation zone was reduced to 1 kilometer from the explosion site.

No injuries or damage was reported beside the pipeline itself. The site is in a rural area.

National Energy Board spokesman Tom Neufeld said the fire was along Enbridge’s Westcoast main line, which falls under the board’s jurisdiction.

“NEB inspectors have been deployed to this area. They’re going to monitor and oversee the company’s response to the incident, and they’re going to determine the impact and extent of the fire and release,” Neufeld said.

The agency will work closely with the Transportation Safety Board, which is responsible for investigating the incident, he added.

The cause of the incident is still under investigation.

Source:
Financial Post

Part of Enbridge's Ohio TEAL NatGas Pipeline Now in Service

Enbridge said on Tuesday that part of its Texas Eastern Appalachian Lease (TEAL) natural gas pipeline project in Ohio has been put into service, according to a company filing with U.S. federal energy regulators.

TEAL is designed to be one of several different gas pipelines that connect growing output in the Marcellus and Utica shale basins in Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Ohio with customers in other parts of the U.S. and Canada.

FERC approved to put the 0.95-billion cubic feet per day TEAL project into service on Sept. 12. The project will serve as a supplement to the $2.6 billion NEXUS gas pipeline from Ohio to Michigan.

Enbridge projected it would be able to put both TEAL and NEXUS into service in the third quarter of 2018.

Source:
Reuters

$4.8 Billion Allocated to Pipeline as Shell's Massive $31 Billion LNG Project Gets Approved

The $31 billion LNG Canada project led by Royal Dutch Shell was approved on Tuesday, making it the fuel’s first major new project to win approval in recent years.

Construction will start immediately, with first shipments expected before 2025. The aim is to feed the surging demand from Asian buyers, primarily China.

The project will deliver LNG to Asia in about half the time it would take if it was coming from the U.S. Gulf Coast, LNG Canada said.

The project’s $31 billion price tag includes the export terminal, the associated pipeline, pre-construction and site work, contingency and upstream carrying costs.

The Coastal GasLink Pipeline will be in the $4.8 billion range.

Construction on the pipeline is expected in early 2019. Pipeline operator TransCanada Corp will build the pipelines which will carry natural gas from Montney gas-producing region of British Columbia and Alberta to the LNG Canada facility.

The project owners will provide their own natural gas supply and will individually market their share of LNG.

LNG Canada is the biggest greenfield project to be approved globally since Russia’s Yamal LNG in 2013, Dulles Wang, director, North America gas at Wood Mackenzie said in an email note.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said that the project, which will be built in the northern community of Kitimat, British Columbia, marks the largest private-sector investment project in Canadian history.

“We can’t build energy projects like we did in the old days where the environment and the economy were seen as opposing forces,” Trudeau said. “They must go together.”

Source:
Reuters

Conservatives Believe Trudeau Government not Doing Enough to Get Trans Mountain Back on Track

The Trudeau government has insisted that the Trans Mountain Pipeline project will be revived, however Conservative leader Andrew Scheer feels like the current prime minister has been stagnant in his efforts.

In an interview with Global News, Andrew Scheer shared his plans to move the project forward.

After being asked if the original plan of appealing the court ruling that quashed the government’s permits was risky, Scheer said, “What we are suggesting isn’t to just rely on the court, what we are suggesting is for this government to take swift action. It’s been also a month since this ruling, and nothing has been done to move this forward.”

Scheer shared his suggestions:

  • Repeal the carbon tax

  • Appoint a special ministerial representative to get the consultation right

  • Eliminate foreign funding in regulatory meetings


“Nobody believes you can get pipelines built anymore. The government needs to use every tool at its disposal so investors gain confidence and begin to build.” Scheer said.

He added that a representative will have personal responsibilities to the minister and will allow the consultation to be dynamic and go back and forth, allowing problems to actually be addressed.

Global also asked if Scheer would look into an alternative route that would bypass Indigenous land, however he suggested hard data be the deciding factor in the route options.

Source:
Global News Canada