TransCanada has hinted at a rail link to connect its customers to the US market in the past, but talks with customers appear to have advanced as the company has faced six years of delays in waiting for Washington to approve its 830,000-bpd Keystone XL pipeline proposal. President Barack Obama has been warned off approving the pipeline by environmentalist activist donors, who insist that it should be scrapped, since it would encourage production of carbon-intensive oil sands.And then this:
Pipelines are widely considered to be safer and more environmentally friendly forms of oil transport, compared to rail. TransCanada has stated that oil by rail emits three times the greenhouse gases of pipelines, although rail companies dispute the figure.
Mr Girling said the company does not expect to be "a big player" in the rail business, but forecasts the industry's capacity to rise to two million bpd, "as we wait for pipeline approvals.
"At US$50 a barrel, the oilsands are still going to get developed anyway ... I don't think anything the EPA said the other day changes any of those facts. We don't need to do another market study to tell us that."At least three story lines.
First: TransCanada has been incredibly patient with this administration.
Second: Rail is going to get even busier -- worse nightmare for true environmentalists (not faux environmentalists don't care).
Third: Slump in oil prices may be affecting Canadian oil sands, but the price does not seem to be killing the Canadian oil sands. I was always under the impression that it would cost more to develop Canadian oil sands than to develop the Bakken but it appears I was wrong (like the Bakken, more likely one cannot lump the entire Canadian oil sands into one sandbox).