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NEWS: TransCanada seeks bids for its Alberta-New Brunswick pipeline

CBC News reports, “TransCanada Corp. is seeking firm financial commitments from companies seeking to ship crude oil from Western Canada to refineries in Eastern Canada. The Calgary-based company announced on Tuesday morning a binding process that will allow interested producers to bid for space on the pipeline. Companies will have from April 15 to June 17 to enter into long-term commitments to use the pipeline.”

“The proposal would be to convert 3,000 kilometres of the company’s natural gas pipelines to allow for crude oil to be transported. The company would also be looking at building 1,400 kilometres of new pipeline from Quebec into Saint John. The pipeline could carry between 500,000 and 850,000 barrels of crude oil per day from Alberta and Saskatchewan to the eastern refineries, according to the company.”

“Federal Natural Resources Minister Joe Oliver said on Tuesday TransCanada’s announcement was a ‘positive step’. ‘We welcome such proposals, because they can generate thousands of Canadian jobs and long-term economic prosperity — particularly in Quebec and the Maritimes — for generations to come’, Oliver said.”

“Alberta has been interested in the project, because oil from that province is now being shipped to the United States, where there is a glut. That means oil producers are getting $20 to $40 less per barrel than the world price. …A pipeline to the Irving Oil refinery would allow Alberta producers to charge the higher world price.”

The news article notes, “TransCanada said if the next phase is successful, it plans to start seeking regulatory approvals later in 2013, and the oil could start flowing to Eastern Canada by late 2017.”

Council of Canadians chairperson Maude Barlow has commented, “This pipeline would pose serious threats to local water supplies and communities along the route. The option then to export to the much larger and more profitable markets of India, China and Europe with massive tankers from the deep water port is also a major concern of ours.”

For more, please read:
Council of Canadians opposes west-to-east oil pipeline plan
NEWS: Quebec may hold ‘public inquiry’ on west-to-east pipelines
NEWS: Cenovus CEO confirms TransCanada pipeline to New Brunswick for export
NEWS: Harper government backs west-to-east pipeline proposals