“There is a thirst for Canadian natural resources internationally”
OTTAWA (Reuters) – Canada’s verdict on a plan by Kinder Morgan Inc to double the capacity of a crude pipeline will be made on its own merits and is not linked to Ottawa’s approval of a liquefied natural gas project, a senior official said on Wednesday.
In its first major energy policy decision since taking power last November, the Liberal government on Tuesday granted a permit to Malaysia’s Petronas and partners to construct the LNG plant in the province of British Columbia. nL2N1C32GS]
The federal government now has until Dec 19 to decide whether Kinder Morgan can twin its Trans Mountain pipeline from the oil sands of Alberta to the British Columbia coast. Environmentalists strongly oppose the idea.
“Kinder will be decided on its own merits. There is no linkage between these projects,” Energy Minister Jim Carr told reporters.
The Trans Mountain twinning would allow producers to transport more crude to tidewater, where they can get higher prices. Canadian crude trades at a discount, in part because of pipeline capacity shortages.
Carr, referring to the Petronas approval, said Canada understood the needs of energy markets.
“There is a thirst for Canadian natural resources internationally. And what this decision shows is that we are being responsive to that need,” he said. (Reporting by David Ljunggren; Editing by Bernard Orr and Diane Craft)