Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Oklahoma indies like TransCanada decision to build southern end of Keystone XL first

TULSA – The change of plans by TransCanada to construct the southern leg of the Keystone XL pipeline before the northern portion is being seen as a “win-win” by Oklahoma oil producers
TransCanada has chosen to build the segment of the crude oil pipeline from the Cushing hub to the Gulf Coast refining region before it constructs the system's northern leg, an industry executive announced May 12.
The change in plans will provide more takeaway capacity to the Cushing interchange to help U.S. producers compete with the Canadian oil sands production that ultimately will flow south, officials said.
The 4,100-mile Keystone XL pipeline will eventually deliver heavy crude from the oil sands near Hardisty, Alta., to Cushing and then to the Gulf Coast.
TransCanada announced a week earlier that it had revised its plan, choosing to first build Keystone's southern leg from Cushing to Port Arthur, Texas. The Keystone XL extension project awaits regulatory approval by the U.S. State Department.
The Domestic Energy Producers Alliance (DEPA) of Oklahoma City has opposed the Keystone project, arguing that a glut of heavy oil into the Cushing hub would depress the market for U.S producers. The Cushing interchange is a pricing point for crude oil on the New York Mercantile Exchange.
However, DEPA Chairman Harold Hamm on May 12 chenged tack and praised the TransCanada move as a "win-win-win decision" for independent producers, TransCanada and consumers. Hamm is the CEO of Continental Resources Inc. of Enid.

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