Sep. 25, 2013, 5:43 PM
- A U.S. rejection of the Keystone XL pipeline (TRP) could defer 300K bbl/day of oil sands growth during 2015-17, shaving $1.8B from planned capital expenditures and pushing as much as $7.8B in spending on oilfield services beyond 2018, according to an RBC Capital report.
- Newer projects set to come online after 2016-17 could be deferred if Keystone isn't approved, but the overall impact likely would be mitigated by use of rail and competing pipelines, and producers such as Suncor Energy (SU), MEG Energy (MEGEF.PK) and Cenovus (CVE) which already have plowed billions into expansions of existing projects are hardly expected to change course.
- RBC echoes the emerging consensus view that bitumen growth is likely to continue regardless of the ultimate Keystone verdict.
Sep. 24, 2013, 6:45 PM
- Pres. Obama has been pushing Canada to improve its green energy credentials and improve its environmental performance to gain approval of the Keystone XL pipeline (TRP), but the World Energy Council’s Energy Sustainability Index suggests the U.S. is behind Canada on sustainable energy development.
- Canada places sixth in WEC’s latest ranking, up four spots from last year’s survey, while the U.S. trails far behind at no. 15; Canada also edged out Norway and Australia, which have comparable resource-based economies and regulatory regimes.
- "One of the things the index does is it cuts through the political rhetoric,” says a consultant who collaborated with the WEC on the report.
Sep. 19, 2013, 6:55 PM
- This week marks the five-year anniversary of TransCanada's (TRP) application for approval of the Keystone XL pipeline to carry Canadian crude directly to the U.S. Gulf coast - a process originally expected to take 18-24 months.
- TRP says it’s not prepared to wait out the Obama administration, but it has already spent ~$2B on KXL, mostly for segments of pipe and pumps but also for rights-of-way and permitting.
- But not everyone in the oil patch thinks the project’s delay is such a bad thing: Birchcliff Energy (BIREF.PK) CEO Jeff Tonken says the White House’s slow-go approach has forced Canada to look hard at other markets outside the U.S. to export its surplus energy.
Sep. 16, 2013, 4:58 PM
- Approval of the Keystone XL (TRP) pipeline is unlikely to be completed this year, Canada’s natural resources minister Joe Oliver says in the first specific comment on the project’s timeline from a Canadian minister.
- The reality of a delay would hardly be surprising, as the U.S. government has yet to complete an environmental review of the project, and experts have said this could push the final decision to next year.
- But even without a northern connection to Canada, the Keystone XL southern leg nearing completion in Texas will move a lot more oil to the Gulf Coast, adding 700K bbl/day of pipeline capacity, 27% above current levels.
Sep. 13, 2013, 12:20 PM
- In addition to settling its dispute with eastern Canada gas distributors over mainline tolls, TransCanada (TRP) also withdraws its $4.5B lawsuit filed against Enbridge (ENB).
- Details of the arrangement have not been finalized, but the companies have "agreed to a tolling framework which will ensure market access and supply flexibility, while providing cost recovery for TransCanada."
- The deal paves the way for “resolution of all outstanding disputes” including the lawsuit TRP filed last month against ENB over development of a proposed 27-km stretch of natural gas pipeline near Toronto, the distributors say.
Sep. 13, 2013, 10:37 AM
- TransCanada (TRP +0.1%) says it reached a distribution agreement with gas companies in Ontario and Quebec that ends disputes over tolls and allows for increased supplies.
- TRP is still in talks with Spectra Energy (SE) and Enbridge (ENB) subsidiaries and others concerning plans to convert a portion of its mainline gas pipeline to carry oil to the Atlantic coast from western Canada.
- The agreement provides for a new natural gas transportation path through the planned Parkway pipeline to the Maple corridor near Toronto.
Sep. 12, 2013, 12:39 PM
- Canada’s largest oil company, Suncor (SU), adds its voice to those playing down the importance of Keystone XL (TRP), as the U.S. government weighs approval of the controversial pipeline.
- "The industry will get access to markets" with or without the pipeline, Suncor CEO Steve Williams says, adding he would not expect a surge of development in the sector - which has experienced major cost overruns in the past - if the project is approved.
- Shipping Canadian heavy crude by rail is now a "real opportunity," analysts at Sanford Bernstein say; expected increases in the price of bitumen-thinning diluent could see the heavy oil-by-rail market grow to $800M by 2015 from ~$226M today, regardless of what happens with Keystone.
Sep. 10, 2013, 11:49 AM
- TransCanada’s (TRP +0.7%) proposed $12B Energy East pipeline would support 10K full-time jobs during development and construction and 1K once it begins service after 2018, according to a Deloitte & Touche report.
- The project to deliver crude from western Canada to the Atlantic coast is expected to take six years to complete, supporting 2,300 jobs from now through 2015 during the development phase and 7,700 jobs during the construction phase in 2016-18, the report says.
- Deloitte projects $7.2B in additional tax revenues during the expected 40-year operational life of the project.
Sep. 9, 2013, 6:45 PM
- Canadian Natural Resources Minister Joe Oliver is in D.C. stumping for the Keystone XL pipeline (TRP), eager to move Canada-U.S. energy collaboration to "a higher level," following reports late last week that PM Stephen Harper is ready to accept U.S. emission reduction targets.
- But Canaccord analysts say they may be pitching the merits of a pipeline that no longer matters, believing Keystone is “no longer a necessity” for Canadian oil sands producers thanks to the rise of crude-carrying unit trains and rival pipeline schemes proposed by Enbridge (ENB).
- The assessment reflects a deepening sense of indifference toward a project that just months ago was billed as critical to continued growth in Canadian oil sands.
Sep. 9, 2013, 12:54 PM
- Keystone oil will travel through America, not to America: That's the key concept conveyed in billionaire Tom Steyer's new anti-Keystone (TRP) campaign which is now running its first TV commercials in a $1M U.S. ad blitz.
- "Foreign countries will get more access to more oil to make more products to sell back to us, undercutting our economy," Steyer says in one of the ads; another features an Arkansas community where oil sands leaked earlier this year from an Exxon pipeline.
- Steyer, a past donor to Pres. Obama, says his efforts are aimed at giving the president the political space to reject the pipeline.
Sep. 7, 2013, 8:25 AM
- In perhaps Canada's final push to win U.S. approval for the Keystone XL pipeline project, CBC reports PM Harper has written to Pres. Obama formally expressing a willingness to accept greenhouse gas emissions reduction targets proposed by the U.S.
- The letter, sent last month, is a clear signal Canada is prepared to make concessions to get Obama's OK for the TransCanada (TRP) pipeline.
- Environmentalists waste no time in criticizing the reported offer, urging Obama to reject any emissions deals as expanding oil sands production is "a recipe for climate failure."
Sep. 5, 2013, 5:43 PM
- U.S. refiners increasingly doubt the Keystone XL (TRP) pipeline expansion will ever be built, and they no longer care, as railroads are carrying soaring amounts of crude from Canada to refineries along the U.S. Gulf Coast.
- Further, Enbridge (ENB) is expanding existing pipes to carry Canadian crude south, and it doesn't need federal permission because it's using existing pipeline rights of way; also, there's so much U.S. oil from its own wells that refiners don't need lots more heavy crude from the north to keep busy.
- Refiners are moving ahead with other plans: Valero Energy (VLO) had signed to receive oil from Keystone when the project was first announced, but it no longer considers the pipeline critical to its business - "If we just sat around and waited for Washington, we'd never get anything done."
Sep. 3, 2013, 6:52 PM
- The delay on a decision on whether to approve the Keystone XL (TRP) pipeline, possibly into next year, is seen buying more time for all sides - giving opponents time to marshal efforts against it but also offering Pres. Obama a chance to wring concessions from Canada.
- Observers say Obama may be trying to "extract the maximum leverage" in discussions with Canada on reducing emissions from oil sands production, important for Democrats in upcoming elections because of the money and mobilization the environmental community offers.
Aug. 30, 2013, 2:11 PM
- The southern leg of the Keystone XL pipeline is running behind schedule, according to an aerial analysis by research firm Genscape.
- TransCanada (TRP +0.7%), which owns the pipeline, has said the project will be completed by the end of 2013, but Genscape sees this estimate as optimistic based on construction progress.
- With construction lagging, the added time to fill the pipeline in order to begin smooth service will cause a further delay, the research firm says.
Aug. 29, 2013, 6:27 PM
- As the “linchpin” to unlocking the development of Canada’s oil sands, a new report issued by the Sierra Club and other environmental groups asserts the proposed Keystone XL pipeline (TRP) fails Pres. Obama's criteria for approval because it would exacerbate global warming.
- The report takes aim at the State Department draft study that said the pipeline would add only ~0.83M metric tons of carbon dioxide to the atmosphere each year; the environmental groups say that misses the point.
- "The Keystone XL presidential permit decision is so important precisely because it has critical implications for the rate at which tar sands are extracted," the report says.
Aug. 27, 2013, 5:59 PM
- TransCanada (TRP) wins a Texas appeals court ruling allowing it to lay the Keystone XL pipeline across a family farm, eliminating one of the last obstacles to completion of the southern leg of the pipeline.
- Julia Crawford claimed TRP lacked the right to use state eminent domain laws to cross her farm without her permission; a separate appeals court had rejected the same argument by another landowner.
- Two other Texas landowners are pursuing court battles against Keystone in various state courts, as the pipeline nears completion in Texas.
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