Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

West-east oil pipeline picks up steam

  • Print

SAINT JOHN, N.B. -- A proposal to transport Alberta oil as far east as New Brunswick took a step forward Tuesday as TransCanada Corp. (TSX:TRP) announced it was seeking binding commitments from shippers before determining whether there is a business case to proceed.

The Calgary-based energy company said it is trying to determine whether there is enough interest in the idea, which would involve converting an existing 3,000-kilometre natural gas pipeline so it could carry crude into Quebec.

The Energy East Pipeline project could also see a 1,400-kilometre extension that would ship oil into the port city of Saint John, N.B., home to the Irving Oil refinery, Canada's largest.

Proponents of the development say it would bring jobs and reduce Eastern Canada's dependence on foreign oil, thereby increasing the country's energy security. But critics say they are worried about potential environmental damage, pointing to the rupture Friday of an ExxonMobil pipeline in Arkansas.

"This would be a very old pipeline built to carry natural gas, not diluted bitumen, and you could have major spills," said Keith Stewart, the climate and energy campaign co-ordinator for Greenpeace Canada.

"This goes through some very remote areas, but it also goes through populated areas."

Federal Natural Resources Minister Joe Oliver, who has backed the project, said such concerns are unfounded and don't take into account the need to increase Canada's access to lucrative markets abroad.

"If you follow their logic to its conclusion... what they're saying, I guess, is that they don't want to see any pipelines built," Oliver said in Ottawa.

"If we do not build pipelines, the oil will be stranded and all the potential economic benefits that would flow from that would be lost."

Oliver welcomed TransCanada's announcement, as did New Brunswick Premier David Alward, who held a news conference at the Irving Oil refinery to express his support.

"A west-east pipeline will strengthen Canada's economy and stimulate new growth in jobs in every region and every community of our province," Alward said.

"But we must not forget that this is a critically important project that will benefit all Canadians."

The idea of shipping oil eastward has also enjoyed the support of Alberta Premier Alison Redford, who met with Alward in February to discuss it.

-- The Canadian Press

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition April 3, 2013 B5

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

LATEST VIDEO

Wpg_Police_discuss_Red_River_search

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • A black swallowtail butterfly land on Lantana flowers Sunday morning at the Assiniboine Park English Gardens- standup photo – August 14, 2011   (JOE BRYKSA / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS)
  • JOE BRYKSA/WINNIPEG FREE PRESS Local- A large osprey lands in it's nest in a hydro pole on Hyw 59  near the Hillside Beach turnoff turn off. Osprey a large narrow winged hawk which can have a wingspan of over 54 inches are making a incredible recovery since pesticide use of the 1950's and  1960's- For the last two decades these fish hawks have been reappearing in the Lake Winnipeg area- Aug 03, 2005

View More Gallery Photos

Poll

Do you think food-security issues are an important topic to address during this mayoral campaign?

View Results

View Related Story

Ads by Google