Trans Mountain Gives Pipeline Update

Oil & Gas

Trans Mountain Corporation has revealed that it has made “considerable progress” towards a safe restart of the Trans Mountain pipeline.

“Based on current conditions and the amount of progress we have been able to make in the face of continued challenges with weather and access, we are working towards restarting the pipeline at a reduced capacity early to mid-next week,” the company said in a statement released on November 26.

“Once restarted, delivery of oil and refined products currently in the line will continue as they progress to their delivery points at either Kamloops, Sumas, or Burnaby. After initial start-up, a sustained effort will continue to return the system to its full capacity as soon as possible,” the company added in the statement.

Trans Mountain Corporation noted that it was in regular contact with its shippers and that it was working to mitigate potential impacts of the pipeline shut down on the region. The company highlighted that the pipeline is a critical piece of infrastructure for British Columbia and Washington state.

The Trans Mountain pipeline remains shut down following a voluntary, precautionary shut down on November 14 in anticipation of the impacts of heavy rainfall and extreme weather conditions, Trans Mountain Corporation highlighted.

On November 25, Trans Mountain Corporation warned of a continued deterioration of weather conditions in the region in the coming days.

“Trans Mountain is closely monitoring the situation to ensure our crews can continue to progress safely, particularly in areas still dependent on air support for access and provision of supplies and equipment,” the company said in a statement at the time.

“Trans Mountain has added snow maintenance equipment – two plows and two snowcats – to the list of heavy equipment already engaged in the response. More than 400 people, seven helicopters and some 100 pieces of heavy equipment in the Coquihalla and Coldwater regions, focused on getting the pipeline restarted,” the company added in the statement.

Last week, Parkland Corporation (TSX:PKI) announced that it had initiated steps to pause refinery processing operations at the Burnaby Refinery in response to the “ongoing crisis” in British Columbia that resulted in the shutdown of the Trans Mountain pipeline.

The Trans Mountain Pipeline was established in October 1953 to create a reliable energy supply for Canada and the United States, according to Trans Mountain Corporation’s website. An expansion project at the asset is underway, which will create a pipeline system with a nominal capacity of 890,000 barrels per day, the company’s site highlights. The capacity of the pipeline has been increased numerous times, with an initial expansion in 1957. The most recent expansion project took place between 2006 and 2008 with the construction of 13 new pump stations and modifications to existing stations.

To contact the author, email andreas.exarheas@rigzone.com

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