CALGARY – Enbridge Inc (TSX:ENB) has outlined a pipeline expansion plan it says can cover the expected oil production increase from Western Canada for the next decade.
The company’s executive vice-president of liquids pipelines says the replacement and restoration of its Line 3 pipeline, combined with upgrades and adjustments to other pipelines on its mainline system, could add about 875,000 barrels a day of capacity.
“These solutions can be staged to meet industry’s needs through to about 2028,” Guy Jarvis said Thursday at an investor day meeting in Toronto.
The capacity increases would include 375,000 barrels a day from restoring the full capacity of Line 3, plus about 500,000 barrels a day of capacity elsewhere on the mainline system that Jarvis said would require little to no regulatory permitting.
Jarvis said that shippers want Enbridge to continue with plans to expand the mainline system that runs from near Edmonton to Superior, Wis., due to uncertainty about other projects.
“There is still concern amongst our shippers about the viability of the competing pipelines getting approved, and if approved, getting built,” he said.
His comments come as the future of Kinder Morgan’s Trans Mountain project remains cloudy. The alliance between the B.C. Green and NDP parties has vowed to use all means available to stop the project despite it being fully permitted with a scheduled September construction start.
Enbridge’s growth plan is dependent on it replacing the Line 3 pipeline, which still requires regulatory approval in Minnesota where it faces a determined opposition.
The company said it could start construction on the Canadian portion of Line 3 as early as this summer and expects U.S. regulatory approvals sometime in mid-2018.