Fri, Aug. 28, 2:28 PM
- Alberta's new government launches its royalty review panel, and says it will not raise oil and gas royalty rates until the end of 2016.
- The specter of a higher government take is spooking the industry, especially with oil prices recently hitting more than six-year lows; some have argued the royalty review should be deferred until the outlook improves, while others would prefer to just get it over with.
- Related tickers: SU, ENB, IMO, TRP, CNQ, CVE, TCK, CEO, OTCPK:HUSKF, OTCQX:COSWF
Fri, Aug. 14, 11:41 AM
- Moving oil and gas by pipeline was 4.5x safer than moving the same volume the same distance by rail in the decade ended in 2013 in Canada, according to a new study by the Fraser Institute.
- “I hope it becomes better understood that saying ‘No’ to a pipeline is saying ‘Yes’ to rail, and that is to increase the risk to the environment and human health and not decrease it,” says the study's lead author.
- Crude-by-rail shipments in North America have skyrocketed in recent years as rising volumes from Alberta oil sands and U.S. shale oil plays outstrip the capacity of current pipelines.
- Canadian producers have waited seven years for the approval of the Keystone XL pipeline (NYSE:TRP), but the author says the safety study has just as much application in considering the Trans Mountain (NYSE:KMI) and Northern Gateway (NYSE:ENB) projects to the Canadian west coast and the Energy East pipeline to access Canada's east coast.
Fri, Aug. 14, 10:37 AM
- The Alliance Pipeline, a natural gas conduit that runs from northeastern B.C. to the Chicago area, is back in service after a six-day outage following a release of hydrogen sulphide gas into the system resulted in a shutdown of the line.
- Natural gas processor and transporter Keyera (OTC:KEYUF) says an “operational upset” during maintenance at its Simonette plant in Alberta caused the problem.
- A number of western Canada producers had to suspend operations while the Alliance Pipeline, owned by an Enbridge (NYSE:ENB) affiliate and Veresen (OTC:FCGYF), was out of commission.
- The pipeline carries 1.6B cf/day of natural gas and ~20% of Canada’s net exports of natural gas to the U.S.
Thu, Aug. 13, 12:45 PM
- A key pipeline for delivering Canadian oil to the U.S. remains shut for a third day, leaving heavy crude stranded in Alberta and keeping its price in the cash market at ~$20 below the WTI benchmark.
- A small leak near Shelbina, Mo., coming from Enbridge’s (ENB -1.1%) Spearhead pipeline, which runs from Flanagan, Ill., to the Cushing, Okla., crude hub forced the shutdown Tuesday of the 193.3K bbl/day pipeline as well as a closing of the parallel Flanagan South pipeline, an even larger 585K bbl/day line that runs from Pontiac, Ill., to Cushing.
- ENB expects operations at Flanagan South to resume today, but does not know when Spearhead may return to service, as it continues to investigate the cause of the spill in Missouri.
- Operational problems at BP's (BP -1.5%) Whiting, Ind., refinery also keep the pressure on prices for Canada’s heavy crude as barrels continue to get backed up.
- Other related tickers: SU, IMO, TRP, CNQ, CVE, TCK, CEO, OTCPK:HUSKF, OTCQX:COSWF
- Earlier: Canadian oil sands price nears $20/bbl, cut in half since July 1
Wed, Aug. 12, 12:27 PM
- Crude oil from Canada’s tar sands has slumped to $23/bbl, chopped in half since July 1 and widening its discount to West Texas Intermediate to nearly $20/bbl, due to a combination of steadily rising production, pipeline constraints and an unexpected outage at a U.S. refinery.
- The price plunge has done little to curb output because oil sands projects require years to plan, construct and pay back; Imperial Oil (NYSEMKT:IMO) recently doubled production capacity at its Kearl oil sands project to 220K bbl/day, and Canadian Natural Resources (NYSE:CNQ) last week said it was built to withstand low commodity prices even as it lost C$405M in Q2.
- At current oil prices, typical oil sands producers are just covering their operating costs, while companies with higher operating costs are “losing money with each barrel they’re producing," says the VP of energy research at ARC Financial in Calgary.
- The results have spilled beyond the oil market into Canada’s economy, forcing the central bank to twice cut interest rates, driving the Canadian dollar to a decade low and impacting the debate ahead of October's federal election.
- Other related tickers: TRP, ENB, SU, CVE, TCK, CEO, OTCPK:HUSKF
Fri, Jul. 31, 7:04 AM
Thu, Jul. 30, 5:30 PM
Tue, Jul. 28, 1:12 PM
- Canada oil sands pipeline projects look doomed after the recent Nexen oil spill leaves "two big football fields of black goo," according to a Bloomberg analysis.
- A rupture in a line operated by the Cnooc (NYSE:CEO) unit that spewed 31K barrels of bitumen, waste water and sand has ignited outrage from communities along pipeline routes and is strengthening opposition that already has stalled every major crude export project from Canada and may lead to stricter regulations, the report says.
- The Alberta Energy Regulator could consider new requirements including scheduled and random inspections of pipelines during construction and while in operation, as well as better spill detection technology; meanwhile, the spill gets bad press in Canadian newspapers every day.
- Related tickers: TRP, ENB, SU, IMO, CNQ, CVE, TCK, OTCPK:HUSKF, OTCQX:COSWF
Wed, Jul. 15, 7:45 PM
- Canada's National Energy Board concludes that Enbridge (NYSE:ENB) is operating safely, despite finding violations of rules designed to identify threats to the public and protect whistleblowers.
- While the report finds that ENB had failed to introduce an explicit policy to encourage employees to identify hazards, incidents and near-misses, it said the company's existing programs and processes are successful at protecting people, the environment and its pipelines.
- The comprehensive audit, which examined six areas of ENB's operations over a 15-month period, is conducted annually by the regulator.
Tue, Jul. 14, 6:22 PM
- Michigan says it will ban heavy crude oil from an Enbridge Energy Partners (EEP, ENB) pipeline that runs under a scenic waterway where Lake Huron and Lake Michigan meet.
- A state task force issues 13 recommendations, including requiring Enbridge to pay for a neutral analysis of the potential liability from a worst-case scenario Line 5 spill and ensuring the company has enough liability insurance to cover damages.
- Only light crude currently moves through Line 5, two side-by-side pipelines below the Straits of Mackinac that transport nearly 23M gal/day of oil.
- In 2010, ~840K gallons of heavy crude spilled from another Enbridge pipeline into Michigan's Kalamazoo River, in the largest inland oil spill in U.S. history.
Fri, Jun. 19, 6:51 PM
- Enbridge's (NYSE:ENB) long awaited dropdown of its Canadian liquids pipeline and renewable energy assets valued at $30.4B to its Enbridge Income Fund (OTC:EBGUF) subsidiary gives ENB the leverage to deploy capital on acquisitions or growth opportunities such as in the gas and power generation sector, or even “ramping up the dividend,” CEO Al Monaco says.
- ENB, which already had announced plans to increase its dividend by 33% this year, says it now expects average per-share dividend growth of 14%-16% during 2016-18.
- Analysts believe the jury is still out; “It remains to be seen how much value this creates,” says AltaCorp Capital's Dirk Lever. “You’re in a point in time in the marketplace where it’s pretty tough for anything to do with energy.”
- Standard & Poor’s downgraded the credit rating of ENB and its subsidiaries to BBB+ from A- after the deal, believing the company’s financial risk profile is “aggressive."
- Related ticker: EEP
Fri, Jun. 19, 8:09 AM
- Enbridge (NYSE:ENB) says it will transfer its Canadian liquids pipelines business and certain Canadian renewable energy assets to Enbridge Income Fund (OTC:EBGUF) in a deal valued at C$30.4B ($24.8B).
- ENB says the deal will provide an alternative source of funding for its growth opportunities and asset acquisitions.
- Enbridge Income Fund, which is operated by ENB, maintains a diversified portfolio of energy transportation and power generation businesses.
- Related ticker: EEP
Thu, Jun. 18, 10:53 AM
- Canada's National Energy Board imposes new conditions on Enbridge's (ENB +0.1%) 300K bbl/day Line 9, including additional testing, before it will allow the oil pipeline to enter service.
- ENB must carry out hydrostatic tests at three locations on the Sarnia, Ontario, to Montreal pipeline, and must carry out bi-weekly ground patrols and quarterly integrity tests for the first two years of operation for the line, the regulator says.
- The NEB says the public controversy over the reversal of the line so it can carry crude from Alberta's tar sands means the project requires extra scrutiny.
Mon, Jun. 15, 5:41 PM
- The two biggest customers on Enbridge's (NYSE:ENB) newly reversed pipeline to carry Western Canadian oil from Sarnia, Ontario, to Montreal say they want to meet Canada's National Energy Board to find out why the pipeline's opening has been delayed by months.
- Valero Energy (NYSE:VLO) and Suncor Energy (NYSE:SU), whose respective 265K bbl/day Jean Gaulin refinery and 130K bbl/day Montreal refinery will benefit from the reversal to pump oil eastward to Quebec, say the delay in approving the start-up of the 300K bbl/day Line 9 pipeline is pushing up their costs and harming their operations.
- The controversial project will carry western Canadian crude to Quebec, replacing supplies currently shipped by rail or imported from abroad; the board approved the project in February but refused to let ENB open the 400-mile line until it met 30 conditions related to emergency response and pipeline integrity.
Mon, Jun. 8, 2:57 PM
- The U.S. government proposes a settlement requiring Enbridge (ENB -3.5%) to complete natural resource restoration projects and pay ~$4M following its 2010 oil pipeline spill in Michigan, the Justice Department says.
- The July 2010 spill dumped 800K gallons of oil and affected 38 miles of Michigan’s Kalamazoo River.
- ENB last month reached a settlement with state officials to pay US$75M over the incident.
Fri, Jun. 5, 6:36 PM
- Enbridge (ENB, EEP) is granted a certificate of need for its proposed Sandpiper pipeline by the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission, which agreed that the $2.6B, 610-mile pipeline is necessary and in the public interest.
- The pipeline will ship crude oil from the Bakken oil fields to ENB’s existing terminal in Superior, Wis., but the PUC will hold separate proceedings on exactly which path it should take across northern Minnesota.
- The PUC added requirements for the environmental review of the pipeline's route, including a study of the cumulative impacts of both the Sandpiper and ENB's proposal to replace its aging Line 3, which carries oil from Alberta to Superior.
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