The National Energy Board has given Enbridge Inc’s (TSE:ENB, Mkt cap 43.87B, P/E 227.68, Div/yield 0.47/3.63, EPS 0.22, Shares 856.71M) much-delayed Line 9 pipeline final approval, allowing the energy delivery firm to start sending oil from Western Canada to Ontario and Quebec, the Calgary Herald reports.
The announcement follows satisfactory results from hydrostatic testing of the line, an extra requirement the Board necessitated in June. The Line 9B reversal and Line 9 capacity expansion projects were initially given the go-ahead after a public hearing process in March 2014, subject to 30 conditions.
However, the independent federal regulatory tribunal revealed in a statement last week that are no further NEB pre-operation requirements.
“When the pipeline becomes operational there are strict conditions that have been imposed by the NEB including biweekly ground patrols, quarterly integrity testing and an additional in-line inspection within the first year of operation. Enbridge is also required to limit the pressure of the pipeline for its first year of operation,” the statement read.
Enbridge spokesman Graham White was enthusiastic about the news, but was cautious about putting a time on startup.
“Once Line 9 is returned to service, our goal is to operate it safely like we have done for close to 40 years,” he said in e-mail correspondence with the Herald.
“There are still some technical preparations that are required and line-fill is not an exactly timed process, so we will not speculate at this time on a specific date for return to full service.”
Meanwhile, Suncor, who are one of the leading beneficiaries of the Line 9B project, declared itself pleased with the approval, explaining how it is “critical infrastructure in terms of providing access to inland crude and providing supply options for our Montreal refinery.”
Enbridge Inc. is a Calgary, Alberta based energy transportation and distribution company. Enbridge operates 5 business segments: Liquids Pipelines; Gas Distribution; Gas Pipelines, Processing and Energy Services; Sponsored Investments, and Corporate. Liquids Pipelines segment owns and operates crude oil and other liquid hydrocarbons pipelines and terminals. The Gas Distribution segment consists of the Company’s natural gas utility operations. Gas Pipelines, Processing and Energy Services segment consists of investments in natural gas pipelines, gathering and processing facilities and the Company’s energy services businesses, along with renewable energy and transmission facilities. Sponsored Investments includes the Company’s 33.7% economic interest in Enbridge Energy Partners, L.P. (EEP), and Enbridge’s interests in both the Eastern Access and Lakehead System Mainline expansion projects held through Enbridge Energy, Limited Partnership (EELP). The Corporate segment includes an investment in Noverco Inc.
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